Business 51 Redesign: Controversial Improvements Spark Concerns among Stevens Point Residents and Owners

Business 51 Development in Stevens Point Reaches Milestone

The redesign of the Business 51 corridor in Stevens Point has sparked controversy among residents and business owners. While the city has made significant progress in completing 30% of the design plan, concerns remain about potential negative impacts on businesses. An open house held at Pacelli High School attracted over 25 attendees, including Cole Racine, owner of Belt’s Soft Serve located off Business 51. Racine noted an improvement in community involvement this time around compared to a previous plan in 2012 that was not well-received by the business community.

Despite efforts to gather input from property owners, concerns persist among business owners about compromised access to their establishments due to the proposed reduction of lanes. Mayor Mike Wiza acknowledged these concerns but emphasized the safety benefits of reducing lanes to prevent erratic lane changes. The current plan proposes transitioning from two lanes in each direction to one lane in each direction with an additional turning lane. Studies have shown that this design can improve safety by reducing lane-changing maneuvers. However, details like driveway locations and raised medians are still open to adjustment based on feedback.

Wiza underscored the importance of community input in shaping the corridor redesign. Although the recent open house may be the last public viewing before the next council approval, stakeholders are encouraged to share their thoughts by reaching out to city officials or local alderpersons. Community feedback will play a crucial role in finalizing the corridor redesign plan.

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