Downtown Work Plan

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The Town is part of a Downtown ecosystem, taking the lead role on long range planning, infrastructure and safety, and a catalyzing role in arts and culture and open space. The Downtown Work Plan transforms ideas into action starting in 2016 and working towards 2020. The original Work Plan was approved in 2016 and an update was approved in June 2018.

Click here for the full Downtown Work Plan and see below chart for the high level status of Work Plan projects.

The Work Plan reflects the role of the Town as a catalyst in the Downtown ecosystem, providing a canvas for activation:


The Work Plan is organized into four categories and each project is assigned a status below:

Goals newProject Status Graphic

Work plan Category Work Plan Initiative  Projects in Progress  Project Status 
Development Patterns West Rosemary Street Development Guide: Design guidelines for an important intersection of Downtown and the Northside Neighborhood.

West Rosemary Street Development Guide

2. Amity Station Development Agreement

1. Execution

2. Planning


Work collaboratively with the University to continuously assess future student housing development both on and off campus to prioritize student safety and protect the historic neighborhoods that surround Downtown.

1. Land Use and Management Ordinance (LUMO) re-write

2. Future Land Use Map (FLUM) focus area

1. Planning

2. Execution

  Four Corners Planning: Develop a "four corners" strategy for the entire Rosemary/Columbia intersection.

1. Town Properties Task Force

2. Historic Town Hall Committee

3. Future of Rosemary Columbia Parking Lot

1. Complete


3. Initiation

  Retail study of Downtown.
FY20 Project
  Wallace Deck: Repair the water sealant and consider adding an additional level to the deck.
Wallace Deck renovations
 Access Conduct a holistic study of Downtown parking and circulation that informs decision making about street infrastructure.

1. Streets and Sidewalks Study

2. W. Franklin Street restriping

1. Close out

2. Initiation

  Engage in alternative models for parking management. Parking improvements Execution
  Downtown parking marketing and education.
Park on the Hill Execution
  Replace Downtown parking meters.

1. Parking meter installation

2. Parking improvements

1. Complete

2. Execution

  Continue to increase lighting in Downtown alleyways.  Alleyway improvements Execution
  Restripe Franklin and Rosemary Streets with bicycle and pedestrian improvements. 

1. W. Rosemary Street improvements

2. Art crosswalks

3. N. Graham and N. Roberson St. improvements

4. Church and W. Rosemary Street intersection repavement

5. Loading Zone improvement

1. Complete

2. Execution

3. Planning

4. Complete

5. Planning

  Continue to implement streetscape plans on cross streets between Franklin and Rosemary Streets.

N. Graham and N. Roberson St. improvements


  Plan for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT).


 Variety Increase exploration on informal and formal pathways with creative pedestrian level wayfinding signage. 

1. Alleyway signage experiments

2. Street Design experiments

1. Ongoing

2. Ongoing

  Add a large community event in the spring.
Near & Far Festival Ongoing
  Work collaboratively with residents and Downtown stakeholders to improve 140 West Plaza and explore connections with Carolina Square.
140 West input process
  Incorporate creative amenities and public art in alleyway improvements.
Alleyway improvements  Execution
  Explore partnerships for new arts and culture opportunities.
Downtown Art Program
Public Realm Research, test and evaluate ideas for activating public realm and green spaces Downtown.

1. Chapel Hill Tire Mini Park

2. 140 West Experiment

3. Street tree video

4. Street Design experiments

5. Alleyway improvements

6. Downtown public toilets

7. Food truck analysis

8. Seasonal Cleaning Initiative

9. Downtown events

1. Complete

2. Complete

3. Complete

4. Ongoing

5. Execution

6. Execution

7. Complete

8. Execution

9. Ongoing

  Develop new connections between Downtown landmarks including Historic Town Hall.
Historic Town Hall Committee


  Complete Tanyard Branch Trail and work with Northside Neighborhood to designate bicycle and pedestrian connections through the neighborhood to Rosemary Street.
Street Design experiments
  Consider removal of regulatory barriers to small business and entrepreneurial start-up activity. 

1. Sidewalk dining process improvements

2. Pop ups

3. Downtown Waste Guide

4. Food truck analysis

1. Complete

2. Execution

3. Complete

4. Complete

  Improve appearance and functionality of alleyway system between E. Rosemary and E. Franklin Streets.
Alleyway improvements 

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Check out the Downtown Ideas page for articles and websites about exciting developments in downtowns across the country and around the world.

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