Downtown plans set to be unveiled

Published 10:08am Thursday, February 27, 2014

Months of work will culminate next Monday with presentation of the final draft concept plan for redevelopment and revitalization in Wetumpka’s downtown and riverfront areas. Everyone interested in the project is encouraged to attend the meeting March 3 at 4:30 p.m. at the Wetumpka Civic Center.

Unveiling of the final draft concludes a process that began last August with an introductory meeting, continued with a public input gathering in October and proceeded on to a charette and plan outline presentation in November.

“I think it’s going to be really exciting, and I believe people will like it,” said Wetumpka Mayor Jerry Willis. “People here have wanted downtown revitalization for a long time.”

The draft has been developed by The Walker Collaborative using research data, findings from on site visits and input from citizens and officials.

Following Monday’s presentation there will be an opportunity for attendees to ask questions of the project team.

“I know there have been plans before, but I think this time it is going to go beyond just being something on paper,” said Willis. “Our 231 corridor is all business, but there’s a uniqueness and a quaintness to our downtown that will present itself really well in everything new we’re trying to do.

“Downtown is so suited to the events and different activities we have here. That charm and uniqueness works well with what the closeness that’s part of the festivals held downtown.”

Wetumpka’s redevelopment effort began in late 2011 with an overall plan completed in 2012 and adopted in January 2013 which focused on broad planning principals, catalyst projects and precedents from other locations.

The official public hearing for the riverfront and downtown plan will be held during the Wetumpka Planning Commission’s next meeting, scheduled for March 10 at 6 p.m. in Wetumpka City Hall.

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