The Opelika Road Corridor, extending from Gay Street on the west to the City Limits on the east, was identified in CompPlan 2030 as a key commercial corridor in need of redevelopment. The purpose of the resulting Renew Opelika Road project is to revitalize and redevelop one of the City’s most important corridors. The project is needed to help encourage new investment and reinvestment in the corridor by lowering vacancy rates, providing an attractive visual environment, helping overcome outdated and underutilized building and lot configurations, and improving the transportation network for all users. Renew Opelika Road is helping reverse the corridor’s decline and growing the corridor into the vibrant, beautiful, and economically-productive area that it has the potential to become.
The City Council has allocated $5 million over five (5) years in the Capital Improvement Plan to address these concerns. A commercial development incentive program has also been developed which specifically targets Opelika Road and similar areas in need of redevelopment. In order to address the range of issues identified above, the City developed a corridor design plan with emphasis on redevelopment, complimentary land uses, and urban design.
On Tuesday, April 17, 2012, the Auburn City Council approved a professional services agreement with Design Workshop, Inc., to provide professional planning, corridor design, and public meeting facilitation services for the Opelika Road Corridor Redevelopment Plan.
The planning process included an extensive process of public engagement through public design meetings, one-on-one interviews, and online opportunities for input. Utilizing public input and analysis of existing physical and economic conditions, Design Workshop, Inc. drafted a plan that addresses land use, building and site design, architecture, transportation, streetscapes, and recommendations for implementation and future funding. The Renew Opelika Plan was adopted by the Planning Commission in June 2013 and various departments have been integrating the implementation of the plan into their work programs.
Renew Opelika Road Plan