I have not given up on our old downtown, or that section along 12600 S from about 1300 W to Park Avenue. I heard from several of you that have expressed a strong desire to have more sit down restaurant, specialty retail and business offices closer to home. To have a more comprehensive plan for the downtown instead of the seemingly haphazard development and types of use currently in place.
I moved forward earlier this year and commissioned a study with Psomas engineering that presented several design concepts for the old downtown this past May. These concepts were after much discussion with several stakeholders, including residents, property owners and existing businesses in the area. Those designs can be seen here.
My vision is to have a “restaurant row” concept along both sides of the entrance to the main park. Shared parking stalls in the park will allow these remaining spaces to have the room to put some great patio features that look into the park, along with streetscapes and monument signage that could really make this area stand out in our city. Have office space fill out the rest of our commercial gateway zone next to Wal Mart and across the street on the south side of 12600 S would bring in some much needed day time population that will help drive restaurants to the downtown.
We really have an opportunity to make these changes in the next year or two. There are several things the city can do to entice this type of development. It will take the right kind of leadership and negotation skills to make it happen. I believe I’ve demonstrated those skills and will make the realization of the downtown revitalization a priority as your Mayor.