The City will reveal its preferred concept for a new roadway that will better connect the Riverfront area to Santilli Highway, creating a road network for new and innovative development to building off of.
In an online meeting on Wednesday, March 10, at 6 p.m., the City will host the second part of the Riverfront Master Plan process, with a meeting in December unveiling three alternatives to creating a new roadway through the industrial areas to connect to the park and to spur higher and better uses.
Mayor Carlo DeMaria has been intensely interested in the process and said this was an area of the city that is going to be transformed in the next few years.
“The Everett Riverfront is the City’s largest opportunity to create a new and vibrant neighborhood that builds on the success of our existing businesses and breweries on Norman Street and expands that vision to include access to the river and new residential and commercial opportunities,” he said. “I’m excited to share my administration’s vision for this area that will be truly transformational for the city.”
Transportation Planner Jay Monty said the proposed roadway is a way to unlock the momentum that has been growing in the area with the breweries, distilleries, restaurants and several new residential developments constructed or approved.
“The mayor doesn’t want the area to turn into a bunch of warehouses,” said Monty. “We want a vibrant community back there.”
The way to get there will be with a new roadway network, said Monty, that will accommodate vehicles, bikes and pedestrians – acting as a piece that will spur development alongside it. In December, the City and its consultant unveiled three roadway concepts, but the second roadway was the one chosen after that meeting.
Monty said that concept starts at the turn in Santilli Highway near the Night Shift Brewery and runs behind it curving slightly around some existing land parcels, crossing South Creek and then ending at the new circle in RiverGreen Park.
“That was the concept we picked after feedback, and that was the second option,” he said. “We modified it a little bit and changed the alignment a little bit to match the parcel lines…The mayor is hopeful there will be a dedicated roadway built that would mesh with the existing streets and create a real neighborhood fabric down there. Right now the only road is Air Force Road. This creates redundancy and will keep freight traffic off that road.”
It will also set the perameters for development there before they happen, he said. He said the last thing they want to happen is for a developer to come in and build a new project that includes their own driveway. With the new roadway, the routes are pre-determined and planned. The implementation of the new roadway will depend on contribution from developers, said Monty. Anyone coming in to propose development on the sites would be expected to make a large contribution towards building the new roadway access points. That, he said, would drive the timeline for building out the plan.