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City leaders map out a walkable Person Street

Posted June 7, 2008

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— City leaders and nearby residents gathered Saturday to map out a vision for a walkable destination on Person Street.

Eighteen people took part in a tour of the area led by city planners. The goal was to find out ways to make the business area of Person Street, between Peace and Franklin streets, better.

“It’d be nice to have an area where people could walk from the surrounding neighborhoods and be able to get a coffee,” said Philip Bernard, who lives in the nearby Mordecai neighborhood.

After the tour, leaders and residents met at Peace College to go over the area’s strengths and weaknesses.

Residents said they want fewer “closed door businesses,” which are not open on weekends or evenings to draw people to the area. They also suggested more variety in businesses, including restaurants, of which there are none in the area.

Daryl Wall’s antiques and specialty gift store, "The Golden Frog,” on Person Street is open weekends.

“I’d like to see more retail businesses come in, maybe some nice restaurants, something more for the community in the evenings,” Wall said.

City planners said they envision the area as a vibrant "village center” that's pedestrian friendly, with a pleasant streetscape, ample parking and wider sidewalks. They see Person Street as a "village main street" for surrounding neighborhoods, including Mordecai and Oakwood.

“We want to make sure people have places to walk to shop, versus driving, as we look into the future,” Raleigh City Planner Mitchell Silver said.

City staff will make recommendations based on the community feedback to the city council in the summer. 

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