HUNTSVIILE, Ala. (WHNT) -- Workers have began digging at the Councill Courts site in the southside of downtown and their work has left some WHNT News 19 viewers wondering about traffic in the area.
Planners say they have looked into traffic concerns from the beginning of the project and have a plan in place to make sure congestion does not follow the development.
The plan calls on the city to extend Harvard Road through the property to create a new route into downtown from Governors Drive, and to build a large public parking garage for people living, working and shopping there. The city will also rebuild existing roads in the area.
Marie Bostick, city planning director, said there will be two parking garages, one of them owned by the city that can hold 800- to 1,000- parking spaces.
The city has championed the idea of redeveloping Councill Courts as an "urban, pedestrian-friendly, mixed-use" neighborhood. Bostick said the city would eventually like to add a greenway along Fagan Creek, which adjoins the Councill Courts site.
The housing projected that once was located on the site closed in early 2010 as part of the housing authority's efforts to deconcentrate poverty. The land is being sold to finance the purchase of additional public housing units across the city.
Once completed there will be a new Publix grocery store, hotel, parking decks, housing and other retail space on the site.