Avondale Estates officials discuss streetscape project

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Before more new development comes to Avondale Estates, city officials want to make sure the central business district has a consistent streetscape standard.

Mayor Jonathan Elmore started a streetscape discussion during the Board of Mayor and Commissioners work session on Sept. 6. With the construction of the mixed-use development at Sam’s Crossing and East College Avenue, and Avila—formerly Euramex Management—moving forward with its plans for the Fenner Dunlop property, Elmore said he wants to make sure the city has streetscape standards in place before more development takes place in the city.

“This is really kind of a big deal and I just want us to start talking about it,” Elmore said. “[Streetscape] is tied to zoning, but I think we need to nail that down and we need to do it in a way that’s compatible to the downtown master plan, with our vision with zoning and all of that.

“Yes, this is a bigger discussion about the entire framework and zoning, but I think this is something that’s going to start coming up more and more often,” Elmore added. “We’re going to have to talk about it as we move forward with the [city-owned] four acres [of Fenner Dunlop]. People are looking at property, people are going to be buying property. [We] have to start nailing down what we want our street to look like.”

In addition to the current development projects, the city will soon have a new design for the Highway 278 road diet project. The city is currently asking for requests of qualifications for engineers to design the city’s section of the highway.

Commissioners agree the city should continue discussions on developing standards.

“If we go ahead and decide on [the standards] it makes it easier for a developer to know that this [sidewalk] is done so they can get to another part of the sidewalk and it’s consistent with the rest,” Commissioner Brian Fisher said.

The board asked city staff to provide them with the standards that currently shape the streets in downtown Avondale Estates.

“I think where we need to start is what we have now,” Elmore said. “I just know that if we don’t start to think about streetscape standards now it’s going to be really difficult. It may involve acquiring property to create more rights-of-way to do these things. It can be a big deal.”

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