A section of downtown Macon could look radically different if a new park becomes a reality.
Designs have been completed for Poplar Street Commons, a new park stretching the block along Poplar from First to Second streets. The drawings by the Atlanta-based architectural firm HGOR feature a linear park, roundabout, wider sidewalks and other “streetscape” improvements.
The park would be located at the site of the former Avenue of Flags, when Macon was known as Flag City U.S.A., and the current location of a monument honoring women of the Confederacy.
It would also be situated outside a new parking deck and the planned multimillion-dollar Central City Commons development that will include a Hyatt Place hotel.
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Poplar Street Common’s designs feature nearly 19,000 square feet — enough space to hold hundreds of people at a time, according to HGOR.
One area called Gathering Plaza will have tables and chairs, lighting and terraced steps leading to open lawn. And the nearby Second Street Plaza would be a place where event stages could be set up and food trucks could serve people.
The designs also include changes to the layout of roads, including a rerouted D.T. Walton Sr. Way and a roundabout at the intersection of Poplar and First streets. Among the streetscape improvements around the park will be bike lanes and shade trees.
The Macon-Bibb County Commission still needs to identify a source of funding for the park. A potential option is using money from the $280 million special purpose local option sales tax.