Roanoke City Pushes Plan For Downtown Plaza Back Until Fall

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Roanoke City leaders have punted the downtown market plaza idea to the fall.

City leaders will get rid of over a dozen parking spaces at the corner of Market Street and Campbell Avenue, those spaces directly in front of the Market Building, and build a new outdoor plaza to include more seating and vending opportunities.

City staff wanted to do the work, at an initial cost of $600,000, over the winter in order for the new plaza's opening to coincide with the reopening of Center in the Square.

Now city leaders have decided to bid the project out in November.

Roanoke City's chief engineer Phil Schirmer said he hopes the project will start in January and be finished by April.

Schirmer said the main factor in not doing the work this year was the outdoor vendors.

Vendors told the city they didn't want construction to hurt their spring sales, Schirmer said.

Schirmer also said rising construction costs factored in the decision to wait.

He said, due to a better economy, construction costs are going up between two to three percent.

"It's a supply and demand type thing," he said.

The revamp will add about 5,000 square feet to the current outdoor market area, adding some vending spaces as well.

It will also fix some stormwater issues in the downtown area.


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