Starkville could start repaving Main Street as early as 2022.
Since Main Street has not been repaved for about 20 years, Mayor Lynn Spruill said she believes now is the time to take action and improve Main Street in downtown Starkville . After the council of aldermen approved a proposal on Aug. 17 for Kimley-Horn landscape architect Henry Minor to create a layout for Main Street, Minor presented a preliminary design to the council during its working session on Friday.
The main goals of this design, Minor said, are to prioritize the pedestrian experience and create more outdoor space, especially for businesses.
“When Spruill told us this project was to really transform the environment and experience of this downtown corridor – from Montgomery right to City Hall,” Minor said.
If the board approved this plan, much of the street would be compressed and the turning lanes removed. The purpose of this would create a larger “pedestrian zone” that would encourage individuals to walk or cycle along Main Street and give businesses the option of arranging seating or outdoor spaces.
“The reason that’s so important is that we’re taking the sidewalk and gutter line that’s across the street today, and we’re going to bring it up to five feet,” Minor said. “… What we’re proposing along this stretch in the heart of downtown is to bring the curb and gutter about five feet on each side… that’s kind of the key dimension we’re trying to achieve. to achieve.
This design would eliminate the right turn lane on Montgomery Street to better align traffic lanes and ensure more efficient travel. The intersection of Rue Lafayette would be raised to the same level as the sidewalk, and the entire section in front of City Hall would also be elevated to create a staging area for the purpose of stimulating economic development and encouraging more businesses coming downtown, Minor mentioned.
Trees would be lined up along the main street and lights would be hung, much like the lights that currently occupy rue Lafayette.
Much of the slope parking would be changed to parallel parking to allow for wider sidewalks. Larger parking spaces would also be installed for food trucks and unloading areas for delivery trucks. The total loss of parking spaces would be around 45 spaces.
The alderman of Ward 5 Beatty expressed concern about the loss of parking, citing that minimal parking is already a problem for the downtown area.
“I think over 40 spots are lost, it’s a loss,” Beatty said. “… For me, this is something we have to look at.
Minor said much of the development reflects the design of construction that will soon begin on Route 182. The Route 182 plan will revitalize the segment of the route between Long Street and Old West Point Road. A construction grant from the United States Department of Transportation will fund 80 percent of the estimated $ 12.66 million project.
Because this design was a preliminary discussion, the board won’t vote on approving this provision for some time, Spruill said. She said if the board of directors approved this particular project, it would cost the city close to $ 6 million.
Spruill said she also wants to work with the managing director of Starkville Utilities to create a new water and sewerage plan as part of the road design to improve water flow. to residential and commercial entities. She said she would like to move forward with the plan next year, but knows the city needs to take appropriate action before proceeding.
“This is the opportunity to see what they came up with and see what the ramifications would be. If we’re going to move forward with this, we’ll have to find funding, ”Spruill said. “The people of Main Street should be there. This is a first look at how we can make our community and downtown much more vibrant and how we can envision it in the next 30 or 40 years.