Roger L. Stancil, Town Manager


Lance Norris, Public Works Interim Director


Funding for Downtown Streetscape Master Plan and Lighting Plan Revisions


June 27, 2007


The purpose of this report is to


On May 22, 2006, the Council adopted a Resolution authorizing the use of $100,000 - $125,000 in available Streetscape bond funds to hire an urban lighting specialist and an urban designer/landscape architect to review and revise the Streetscape Lighting Plan for all areas of the Central Business District and revise the Streetscape Master Plan and develop detailed plans for future improvements in sections of downtown where Streetscape improvements have not yet been undertaken. The May 2006 Memorandum and the adopted Resolution are included as attachments to this report as well as a map showing completed sections of downtown Streetscape.

Earlier this year statements of qualifications were solicited and interviews conducted with four design firms selected from the 22 responses to the Streetscape Master Plan Request for Qualifications.  A Council Committee composed of the Mayor, Mayor Pro Tem Bill Strom and Council Members Cam Hill and Laurin Easthom along with Town staff interviewed the firms. 


From the four design firms interviewed, the Council Committee selected Mikyoung Kim Design of Brookline, Massachusetts. Mikyoung Kim Design was selected for their international experience in a variety of urban design settings as well as their familiarity with downtown Chapel Hill through their work on the public art component of the Lot 5 Downtown Economic Development Initiative. 


The budget proposed by the designer exceeds the original allocation approved by the Council in May 2006.  The changes to the Streetscape Master Plan and Lighting Plan are proposed at $76,000, not including costs reimbursable to the consultants such as printing and reproduction costs, photography, and travel expenses.

As part of the mapping and analysis of existing conditions, the Council Committee has agreed to a staff proposal to utilize the services of an independent certified arborist to evaluate the condition of existing street trees and make recommendations for future care and potential replacements.  We anticipate an arborist’s fees could add $8-10,000 to the project budget and that the total for the initial work to produce the revised Streetscape Master Plan may be $90-100,000, including reimbursable costs.

The 2006 Council Resolution also calls for “detailed plans for future Streetscape improvements in areas of downtown where improvements have not yet been undertaken.”  The second element of the Master Plan update will involve two additional components of work: 1) preparation of schematic plans for the remaining unbuilt portions of the Streetscape Study Area (see Attachment 3) consistent with the recommended patterns and materials illustrated by Mikyoung Kim Design; and, 2) preparation of detailed construction plans for one selected section of downtown to demonstrate that the Master Plan concepts are buildable.

The second component of the Streetscape Master Plan update as described above requires a high level of detailed design work as well as accurate basic information such as a survey of existing conditions including utility locations.  

The total design fees proposed by Mikyoung Kim Design for the schematic plans and “case study” construction plans is $123,250, not including reimbursable costs or the detailed survey work (which would be performed by Town staff and/or through a separate contract).

Additional funding up to $125,000 is recommended to obtain the base information and detailed designs needed for the planned improvements. We suggest that once the first component of the Master Plan update has been completed, the Council Committee could evaluate the progress made to that point by Mikyoung Kim Design relative to the remaining work, including the schedule and budget, to determine if we should proceed with Mikyoung Kim Design or consider using another firm for the detailed design phase. 

If the additional funding is approved, the total budget for the Master Plan and Lighting Plan revisions and detailed plans for future Streetscape improvements would be $250,000.  The current available balance of 2003 Streetscape bond funds is $1.4 million.

Approval of the attached Resolution would authorize a total of up to $250,000 in available bond funds for the design work and would authorize the Town Manager to execute contracts to obtain consultant services to complete the entire scope of work from Master Plan and Lighting Plan revisions to schematic plans and construction drawings. In addition, the proposed Resolution would allow the Council Committee to make future decisions regarding specific details of contracts with Streetscape design consultants.


We recommend adoption of the attached Resolution.


  1. May 22, 2006 Memorandum (begin new page 1).
  2. May 22, 2006 Resolution A (p. 7).
  3. Map of Streetscape Improvements Completed to Date (p. 8).