Council Gives Main Street Redevelopment The Go-Ahead

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After 13 months of work, the Green Valley Redevelopment Committee has received town approval to go ahead with revitalization plans for Main Street and surrounding neighborhoods along the South Beeline Highway.


Community Development Director Bob Gould said Monday that the committee's work has only just begun.


"There's a whole multitude of things to do," he said. "It's just taking it step by step going through this until we get it done."


Committee Chairman Dick Wolfe talked about a public meeting the committee will hold Thursday to discuss implementing the plans.


George Flanigan of ASL Consulting will discuss the proposed design concept for Beeline Highway and Main Street.


"It's a highway enhancement project," Wolfe said Tuesday. "It extends to just above Main Street and is a gateway for people coming into Payson. We hope to encourage people to leave the Beeline Highway and go down Main Street."


Wolfe said Thursday's meeting at 5:30 p.m. at the Rim Country Museum will include a discussion of possible designs for the gateway project.


"We encourage artists and artists groups to come to this meeting," he said. "There's an alarming lack of public art in this town. We'd like to see the artists be a part of the design project. We're excited about it and hope they will fully participate."


Wolfe said Thursday's agenda also includes a discussion on how and where to begin the Green Valley Redevelopment Project -- "the first steps."


The committee will also look at the acquisition of a parcel of land for off-street parking.


"That's the key to bringing businesses to Main Street," Wolfe said. "If we can provide off-street parking, we can put businesses right up to the sidewalks and make the district pedestrian-friendly, so you don't have these huge black parking lots in front of every business.


"I just think if we can get the town to take this redevelopment area seriously, we'll have an area we can be proud of. We just need the support of the town and the city council."


In other business, sports enthusiasts and library supporters got some backing from the town with the unanimous approval of the Rumsey Park Master Plan designed by Valley architect Larry Enyart.


Enyart, one of the principles with the firm of Lawrence Enyart Architects, was at the council meeting to explain the plan, which includes the addition of a soccer-multipurpose field and two softball fields.


Using a computerized display, Enyart took the council and members of the audience on a five-minute virtual walk around the new library building, which will also be located in Rumsey Park.

In related business, the council approved an ordinance prohibiting the sale of alcohol in the town's parks except under a regular- or special-event liquor license and with the permission of the Town Council where the beverages will be sold. The council eliminated a section of the ordinance prohibiting the use of alcohol in Green Valley Park.


The ordinance states that a permit shall be issued by the Parks and Recreation Department for weddings, religious and political ceremonies and activities, and for the use of alcoholic beverages.

The council unanimously approved a request by Community Development Director Bob Gould to amend the Unified Development Code to include a Citizen Participation Plan and Report for zoning requests.


Gould told the council that Payson's plan is based on one adopted by the City of Glendale.


"What we're hoping happens here is that people are able to make more informed decisions," Gould said. "It's not complicated. It does not mandate that residents have to be in complete compliance (with the zoning request). All it asks for is dialogue."


Chaparral Pines Drive resident Don Harmon said he and other homeowners in his area had attended numerous council meetings in the past few months when zoning change requests were on the agenda.


"I speak for residents in our area that would highly support this," he said.

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