Plans are being made to create a defined entrance to downtown Conway in a response to the Conway2025 project, the community long-range plan developed a few years ago.
Conway Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Brad Lacy said several goals came out of the community visioning process, including the desire for an “entrance feature” to the downtown area.
The current plans - which are conceptual at this point - include a park and an arch across Oak Street near the Chamber of Commerce building.
“This not only provides a great entrance feature to the area, it will also probably alleviate some of the traffic problems,” Lacy said.
Both Lacy and Kim Williams, executive director of the Conway Downtown Partnership, said at this point they are still working on the funding aspect of the plan.
“Your desires have to match up with what you can afford,” Lacy said.
One contribution that has helped with the overall cost of the project was the donation of the property at the corner of Oak and Van Ronkle streets.
The property used to house Earl Rogers Co. enterprises and more recently Roger Auto Parts. The land was donated to the city last year by the family of Earl Rogers and the building that was at the site was demolished late last year.
“The family giving the land was a huge gift,” Lacy said.
At this point, the chamber is working with the architects to have something to present to the city soon.
“Hopefully we’ll have a plan figured out in the next month,” Lacy said.
Jack Bell, assistant to the mayor, said that they met with the designer last month and asked for revisions to the plans to better align with the budget.
He said the city is just waiting for those revisions to be completed.
“It’s an exciting project,” he said.