Fayetteville leaders still eye Murchison Road for rebrand

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- When Fayetteville Councilman DJ Haire spent his childhood in and around Murchison Road, one could have only imagined that decades later he'd be in the forefront leading in effort in restoring the road's reputation.

"I always felt that Murchison Road was always playing catch up to some of the major corridors that we have within the city," said Councilman Haire. "And it's been something that I have spearheaded from almost day one in being a member of City Council. But what is so much better now, when I was somewhat alone in those earlier years--that dynamic has tremendously changed."

The street, which runs through a historic Black neighborhood in the city, has seen its fair share of discouraging news and crime.

"We can do all the work we're doing," said Haire, "but if we're not supporting and enhancing the communities that surrounds the corridor and the communities that travel back and forth and use the corridor, then we're really not doing the full job. Because it truly is about the people we represent."

Haire is helping push forward the Murchison Road Choice Neighborhood plan where Rosemary Street meets "the Murchison." The plan targets and addresses affordable housing and low-income residents in the community.

"That is going to overflow out into the corridor and so improvement is taking place there," he said.

Directly across the street from Fayetteville State University is Bronco Square--which was recently purchased in October 2021.

"Our 100% ownership of Bronco Square means a lot to me," said the school's chancellor Darrell Allison. "Across the street, which is purely enterprise, we'll be able to see (student learning outcomes) from a purely practical standpoint."

Allison believes the school has a role in working with local, county, state, regional, and national partners in advancing the interests of the university.

"It is a priority that for me and my administration that we are present and forever present and we're doing our part for the citizens of Fayetteville, Cumberland County, and Sandhills," he said.

Councilman Haire said the council had no official position or meeting on the renaming of part of Murchison Road to University Road. And even if the council were interested, the North Carolina Department of Transportation maintains the road and the decision would rest with them.
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