Master plan construction underway in downtown Auburn

Master plan construction underway in downtown Auburn
(Source: Brandon Etheredge/WTVM)
(Source: Brandon Etheredge/WTVM)
(Source: Brandon Etheredge/WTVM)
(Source: Brandon Etheredge/WTVM)

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - Even with classes out for the summer, things are not slowing down in the downtown area of Auburn.

Major construction work is closing streets and causing extreme delays across the area. The work is part of the Cities new downtown master plan.

The master plan is being implemented now with projects happening all throughout the downtown core, the task now for city workers is to finish the current projects by fall.

"It is annoying I had to park way up there and walk but I saw what they were doing and adjusted," said Auburn resident Lonnie Smith.

A new housing development on Glenn, and sewer repairs on College, and the final stages of a housing development are underway on Wright Street.

"In the summer, we try to do all of our utility work that needs to get done," Interim City Manager Jim Bunston said.

So now it is a race to finish for construction crews to finish by fall, but under the city's new downtown master plan some of this construction would never have been allowed.

"The construction now got in before the plan was adopted. The plan as it now does not allow student housing in downtown," Bunston said.

So, the city's focus now is improving parking in the downtown core and adding lighting and sidewalks to make the area more pedestrian friendly.

"It is Chaos," said downtown shop owner Porphyria Bynum.

"Parking is at a premium. We are coming up with a way to increase parking, at the same time we are expanding bike racks to help people renting bikes and those with bikes of their own," Bunston said.

But if you travel through downtown the delays won't last much longer. After the current projects, there aren't any more scheduled for the near future.

"We don't want to have streets closed during football season. Our target is always that first football game in the fall," Bunston said.

We expect an announcement on exact plans for expanding parking and the location of a new parking deck in downtown in the next couple of months.

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