TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) —The Hillsborough County Planning Commission takes the first step toward redesigning Fowler Avenue on Monday.
Commissioners are voting whether to move forward with a contract for consulting services from Kimley-Horn.
The agency is also responsible for St. Petersburg’s Union Central District plan.
Families who live near Fowler Avenue in Tampa and business owners on the stretch of road say they’re open to improvement ideas.
“There’s a lot of shops, we’ve got a lot good shops out here,” said longtime resident Jackie. “Nobody is coming because traffic is so bad.”
The stretch of road sees more than 60,000 cars per day, according to Jay Collins, the planning commission’s special area studies manager.
He says commissioners want to hear feedback from community members.
“It’s a strategic action plan so the folks who are out there can see themselves actually moving forward or through those steps to reach that vision that they articulate to us,” Collins said.
He says Fowler Avenue needs improvements for a number of reasons, including the University of South Florida’s growth and University Mall’s redevelopment.
Additionally, he tells 8 On Your Side, the road needs to be more pedestrian friendly, and a rapid bus line could be added to connect the area to downtown Tampa.
“We’re out here to have that conversation with the community and ask them what is it in their future that they see in the communities,” Collins said.
If the commission votes to approve the contract with Kimley-Horn, Collins says a consultant will be out talking with business owners and residents over the next 18 months.
The planning is set to vote on the measure during their regularly scheduled meeting Monday at 2 p.m.