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A BALANCING ACT Frisco ocials said they expect projects associated with the Downtown Master Plan to overlap in certain months. JAN.-FEB. 2022 An update to the Downtown Master Plan is expected to be presented to Frisco City Council. SPRING 2022 Work to revamp Elm Street with concrete pavement and on-street parking will begin. FALL 2022 Work to widen sidewalks along Main Street to 18 feet will begin. In addition, construction of a pedestrian plaza on Fourth Street will simultaneously occur. SPRING 2023 Work on Elm Street is expected to be completed. FALL 2023 Main Street improvements and the Fourth Street Plaza are expected to be completed.
on the Rail mixed-use project. “We have a loyal customer base, and I feel like our customers will support us during the renovation and know that everythingwill be better,” Tsu said. “It’ll be more friendly and hopefully bring more business.” ‘Ibelieveinmycity’ Shannon Hammond, who owns Countdown 2 Escape entertainment venue onMainStreet, is straightforward about whether new accommodations for pedestrians would be worth poten- tially years of construction. “It better be,” Hammond said. “In a city where everything is rst-class except the downtown area…I just think it better be worth it because our city deserves this. Our neighboring cities have vibrant, unique downtown areas. And everybody goes to neighboring cit- ies for that.” Hammond added that she is not particularly worried over whether construction will aect day-to-day business at Countdown 2 Escape. Her business model, she said, requires patrons to plan ahead of their visit to her escape room. Plans for the Fourth Street Plaza are not nalized, according to Brodigan, who said amenities within the future xture are “conceptual” at this point. Although Countdown 2 Escape is a short walk away from Fourth and Elm streets, Hammond said she believes the city is well prepared to handle dynami- cally changing plans. “I think the city is prepared because they’ve been working on this for a long time. And I love my city. I still think it’s the best place to live,” Hammond said. “I will say, I believe in my city. I’m going to trust that they’re ready to undertake this.” Kellie Kauten, owner of CBD
Wellness-Artistic Organics on Main Street, said she is worried about the city beginning construction plans that are still in ux. Kauten said she supports making the sidewalks wider and creating the Fourth Street Plaza, but the removal of on-street parking along Main Street in favor of parking on Elm Street does not sit well with her. In her mind, Frisco should strive for something similar to the series of one-way roads surrounding the downtownMcKinney square. “I can’t see how the trac is going to improve,” she said. “They didn’t create a good ow so that the trac could pass through … does [parking on Elm Street] make people want to walk around downtown?” Plans for infrastructure in The Rail District keep changing, as Kauten sees it. She said shehopes the several “mom- and-pop” shops in the area are ade- quately heard throughout the process. “The big concern was, ‘Do the mer- chants have a voice? Are you going to listen to us?’” Kauten said. “Because you can either make or kill our business with this master plan.” According to Brodigan, the project’s design is meant to encourage drivers to park mainly on Elm Street, then walk through the future plaza for access to the entire downtown area. Even so, Brodigan said plans for what exactly the Fourth Street Plaza will contain are not set in stone. A concep- tual rendering of the future plaza with a large gazebo and seating was rst shown in 2018, but Brodigan said it was a “high-level concept.” “There’s just a lot of details to that,” he said. “Onceyouget into thosedetails, things get tweaked.” Brodigan said the city has been col- laborating with business and home- owners throughout The Rail District as
Frisco’s Downtown Master Plan aims to make The Rail District more walkable.
Expanded 18-foot sidewalks
A central gathering plaza on Fourth Street
A revamped Elm Street with parking spaces total cost for Elm Street $5M for Main Street and Fourth Street Plaza $9M
SOURCE: CITY OF FRISCO COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER
pandemic has made that goal di- cult. She said she also thinks roadwork during the pandemic will make keeping the lights on evenmore dicult. “I think the one-two punch of not even being fully over the pandemic— and what that’s done to my business— and then going into this so quickly is a little bit rattling,” Bowen said. “I’ve steadied myself a little bit, but [I’m] not completely stabilized, and so the ground is going to start shifting again.” Kristen Tsu owns the Bittersweet Ivy boutique a few blocks away from Brown’s business. Tsu said business has been“great” beingon the corner of Fifth andMain streets. Tsu’s boutique also expanded to 1,500 square feet inMay, thanks towork fromNack Development renovating the building for Bittersweet Ivy and two other businesses. Nack Development has invested in a number of projects in The Rail District, including The Patios
SOURCE: CITY OF FRISCO COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER
plans have been rened. He said the city will continue to keep the community informed as construction potentially runs through the entirety of 2022. “We plan to have a presence during construction to make sure we can help keep the businesses functioning,” Brod- igan said. “Although there will be some diculties along the way, we’re hoping tominimize those.”
For more information, visit communityimpact.com .
FRISCO EDITION • JANUARY 2022
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