Cameron Village transformation plan moves ahead - slowly

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Transformation plans for Cameron Village continue to move forward

Cameron Village shoppers and Hillsborough Street visitors are closer to a transition project meant to improve traffic access between both locations.

Wednesday, the Raleigh City Council was set to discuss the Cameron Village and Hillsborough Street Small Area Plan during open session. The Council opted to refer the study to the Growth and Natural Resources Committee for further study.

The Cameron Village Small Area Plan looks to add "bicycle facilities" to Woodburn Road and Oberlin Road along with new and improved sidewalks featuring intersection pedestrian safety on Oberlin, among other things.

RELATED: Link to the full plan (.pdf)

"I think it's great. I mean it's definitely needed in this area," said Cameron Village diner Paula Goldberg. "You know there's a lot of traffic and I think that the biking situation would be awesome. And walking - this whole area is growing so fast."

In an email to ABC11, Raleigh's director of city planning, Ken Bowers, wrote that the cost of the project will be a mix of public and private funds.

"Many of the proposed streetscape improvements and traffic changes could conceivably be implemented in partnership with the private sector as part of a redevelopment project. An example is the new streetscapes that were installed by the developers of the new apartment buildings along Oberlin Road near Clark and north of Smallwood. Others would likely be public projects," Bowers wrote.

Businesses in Cameron Village are also set to benefit.

Ron Hines, owner of Café Carolina and Bakery, has called Cameron Village home for the past 17 years. Parking near his restaurant is challenging, and he welcomes the area's redevelopment.

"Whenever you can have pedestrians moving when there's limited parking is going to help the merchants in the area," Hines said. ""Summertime is naturally slow for us here because a lot of our guests are students from NC State.
"So having pedestrian walkways to make it easier for these new apartments and new things that are going up for NC State students," he continued, "it is going to make it more accessible to them to get to the Village and get to us."

NC State grad Caroline Evans was a frequent visitor to Cameron Village when she was in college.

"I wouldn't want to take away those houses," Evans said after hearing of the proposed modifications. "A lot of them are historic, and I like the way they look."

The redevelopment is broken into three areas: short term (0-5 years), mid-term (5-15 years), and long-term (more than 15 years). According to Bowers, that means the entire project is "20 or more years away."

"Just to give a number, I looked at all the short-term projects for which the City would be in the lead on implementation, and the total cost estimate is between $1.6 and 1.8 million," Bowers said in his email. "The most expensive parts of the plan address changes to the intersections and interchanges on Oberlin Road, which are mid-term improvements and which are estimated to cost between $3.3 (million) and 5.4 million."

Bowers also said more detailed design and engineering will need to take place as part of the implementation process.

Related Topics:
shoppingraleigh newstransportationdevelopmenttrafficRaleigh
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