Downtown Wetumpka to get a facelift - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Downtown Wetumpka to get a facelift

The cost of the plan is completely covered by grant money. The cost of the plan is completely covered by grant money.

City leaders say Downtown Wetumpka needs some work to help draw more people in, and that's exactly what they plan to do. A downtown revitalization plan is set and the city will be getting some improvements.

"I think it will be good for the city," said Rhonda Holman, a Wetumpka Resident.

Holman has lived in Wetumpka all of her life. Although she loves it, she says it would be nice to see her hometown get a facelift, especially downtown.

"It says how much they care about their city because that was the beginning of the city," Holman said.

Leaders also see the importance of improving the heart of the city and that's where the in-depth revitalization plan comes in to play. The project includes redesigning intersections, providing crosswalks, a roundabout, enhancing parking, and beautifying the area, along streetscapes and public spaces like Gold Star Park.

This plan goes hand in hand with the enhancement of the Riverwalk, which includes extended trails for people to enjoy the outdoors and river that runs alongside downtown. Mayor Willis believes tourist attractions will also be created, including a historical museum with an IMAX type theater focusing on the famous crater and the Native Americans.

"Those are the things we are working on, trying to put the entire tourism package together," Willis said.

The plan isn't just to make the city look good, it's also about growth.

"We just think it's time that the people of Wetumpka, Alabama are able to step up and have a re-developed downtown that's beautiful, that presents itself well and is conducive to economic development. It's well on its way," Willis said.

Officials say the revitalization plan will cost $1.5 million. Many residents say the enjoyment of the downtown and outdoors is priceless.

"I think it will be a real plus if we can get those kind of updates and things we can enjoy for years to come," said Ave Lewis, a resident of Wetumpka.

The revitalization plan first was presented two years ago, but now it's been revised and further developed. Leaders say the infrastructure should start within the next 60 days. The cost of the plan is completely covered by grant money.

Business is already starting to grow with the plan. The mayor says a hotel should break ground by April or May. That hotel will back right up to the river for visitors to enjoy.

Copyright 2014 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly