Pedestrian and bike friendly, safe streets & beautification

Trellis asked & you answered

We asked the public two questions to help us decide where and how to spend grant monies provided to Trellis to beautify the McDowell Road shopping district and make it a place where you want to shop and relax.  See the results below!

Wells Fargo and Banner University Medical Center Phoenix each provided Trellis with $50,000 grants to create murals, hire staff, hold community events and improve the look and feel of the Miracle Mile on McDowell.

Why is Trellis receiving grant money for McDowell?

Commercial districts play an important part in creating stable communities, and stable communities help create stable homes. Trellis vision is an Arizona where everyone has a place to call home. Trellis has been an active contributor in revitalizing the Coronado and Garfield neighborhoods and helping families secure stable homeownership in Arizona for 45 years. Formerly known as Neighborhood Housing Services of Phoenix (NHSP), Trellis rehabilitated or built 80 homes in Garfield alone.  NHSP also played a leading role in helping Coronado establish its historic district and create their neighborhood association.  Today we provide no-cost housing counseling, down payment assistance programs, we build new homes, we are a lender and we are leading the revitalization of the commercial district where our business is located on McDowell Road.

Trellis understands that stable communities require stable and diverse shopping districts that meet the needs of the neighborhood. Trellis has been managing the revitalization project on McDowell with our partners for almost five years now and we have seen vacancies drop and local businesses grow.  The revitalization project covers the McDowell Road commercial corridor from 7th to 20th Streets with support from Banner University Medical Center, the City of Phoenix, Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco, LISC Phoenix, Neighborworks, Phoenix Community Alliance, Wells Fargo, and you our neighbors.

Please rank the following eight improvements in order of importance to you, first being the most important:

Trellis created a capital improvement committee made up of business owners, Trellis Staff and PCA Staff and members to reach out to local business owners and stakeholders to help guide where the grant funds will be spent.  195 city residents voted on what improvements we should spend more on, and 101 people gave us new ideas as well. We categorized the ideas into tags and added them to the word cloud you see at the top of the page. These 101 ideas combined with upcoming community meeting results will help us create an ask for our next improvement grant.

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Spring 2020 Survey Results

The improvements with the highest vote by a landslide was making the vacant stores look nicer! We heard you and will make this the first priorty. Next in line was to improve the landscaping next to the sidewalks and get some planters. We will be buying tons of gravel and lots of new plants to make the front of our house look like new. We’ll get some planters in front of businesses and stock them with low water desert plants and sculptures.

Many buildings on the Miracle Mile on McDowell were built over 60 years ago and are in need of updating. We will give four $250 grants to businesses so they can improve the look of their storefronts. We are also working with the City of Phoenix Neighborhood Services Department to qualify businesses for grants of up to $100,000 to redo the entire exterior of their buildings.

Parking and alleyways. Some McDowell Road shops have parking and entrances in the rear and the alleys are just not that inviting.  We will be adding lighting, art, speed bumps and other improvements to make our back of house inviting and safe.

Lastly, we will be adding bike racks in front of and behind stores and adding a few branded signs to let visitors know they are visiting the Miracle Mile on McDowell.

What else would you like to see changed or improved on the Miracle Mile on McDowell?

The wordcloud above was created with the help of 101 survey respondents who shared their vision in writing. We created 57 tags to help categorize them and the larger font words equal the most requested items.  The top requests for improving our street were all related to making the Miracle Mile more pedestrian and bike friendly and making the street safer and slower.  People wanted more shade and trees, bike lanes, places to sit, on street parking, art, crosswalks and a safe and slower street.

Read the responses below:

  1. Better streets & sidewalks
  2. A push button style cross walk in between 18th and 19th streets. The amount of people that cross there is very high.
  3. Somewhere between 16th and the 51 we desperately need a midblock pedestrian crossing with signal. One with a center lane island like at McDowell and 34th St. would be great.
  4. Trees
  5. Rapid business assistance services for business owners seeking to remain or come to the Mile.
  6. Parallel parking and slower speed limit with perhaps a center median
  7. More signage for available parking. It’s still not obvious enough for McDowell traffic
  8. Street diet and designated bike lanes. Thank you.
  9. Pergolas and bollard protectors at corners of intersections and at new McDowell pedestrian crossings that need to be installed.
  10. rolling window shutters to keep the vandals from etching and spraying graffiti on windows
  11. More police patrolling the area for safety and less transients loitering around businesses
  12. Street parking
  13. Custom street lighting.
  14. District Overlay
  15. Narrow all lanes on McDowell Road to re-establish wider setbacks, especially in areas where existing buildings are way too close to passing cars, e.g. 1619-1621 E. McDowell. Also slow speed limits!
  16. Aside from the obvious and major item of a road diet.. anything that makes the pedestrian experience fee even the tiniest bit less exposed and harsh is good!
  17. More shops
  18. On street parking, protected bike lanes, McDowell road diet
  19. More and Appropriate Shade Trees (Pistache used for downtown’s Branding)
  20. trees, places to sit, better parking lots with clearer signs
  21. Trees, non-sketch after-hour hangout, pedestrian friendly McDowell
  22. Bike lanes and bike turning lanes. McDowell as a gateway into downtown and Midtown needs a road diet and reduced speed. Bardstown Road reduces in lanes and speed from the I-64 ramp heading east into downtown, where it cuts through about 7 historic neighborhoods. It is a destination location, home to many shops, restaurants and services (from law and medical offices to dry cleaning and copy centers) that service the neighborhood residents and its many visitors. Yes, people complain about the congestion and drivers cutting through neighborhoods but nobody does anything about it because it’s part of city living and proof of a vibrant community where home prices during the Great Recession continued to climb. It’s not brain surgery, Phoenix.
  23. Pedestrian cross walks. I see too many people attempting to cross McDowell not using the intersections.
  24. More lights
  25. Parking meters for street side parking, allowable except during rush hours. Better, taller & shadier shade trees. Tenants/merchants in the store fronts. Streetscape items like benches, trash/recycling bins, a landscaped median at least in sections, grants for signage restoration or new neon, stronger brighter ladder-style crosswalks, a diagonal new street connecting 17th St fr McDowell south to the next block by the large old vacant church (Brill St?), perhaps a small public parking lot adjacent to this new street, a traffic light at this new 4-way intersection, slower speed limit, historic preservation of buildings, a diner/coffee shop, plants and flowers, new distinctive streetlamps (perhaps recreating those of the 50s?), removal of the walls on the 51 Fwy bridge with replacement by see through railings, up-to-4 story workforce residential infill where possible (vacant lots), and general restoration/renovation of the buildings. : ) Thanks, Steve P
  26. In general, features aspiring to be balanced like well-maintained gardens: not only organized, clean, and resourceful, but also blooming, beautiful, and full of new potential.
  27. General decrease in the “sketchiness factor”, especially to those not everyday familiar with this area.
  28. General investment of the look & feel of the McDowell Mile from being a wasteland spattered with empty and/or decrepit buildings. Outside a few stores and the hospital, the mile looks like a wasted space of uninterested city officials not investing in the surrounding areas to downtown!!
  29. Enforcing/Holding owners accountable for zoning laws. Parking lot improvements, paving and lighting
  30. Trees, benches
  31. Aesthetic improvements that entice ppl to shop/dine in the area. Walk ability and biking lanes.
  32. Murals
  33. Trees
  34. Trees/ landscaping in meridian (similar to what was recently added to univ drive in tempe.) More crosswalks
  35. businesses in the empty storefronts.
  36. The planters should be on the lines of the ones on Grand Ave. Artist decorated and put strategically for traffic slowing.
  37. Information on said vacant stores – is love to see more small businesses there like clothing stores & cafes, etc
  38. Bike lanes
  39. More art 🙂
  40. Narrowing mc dowell to slow down traffic.
  41. Lots of bicycle and pedestrian improvements. Went to Desert Drinks for the first time last weekend and had to Lock my bike on a concrete post close to the road.
  42. Trees trees trees! Trees every 10 ft in the easements, watering infrastructure for the trees, protected bike lanes, on street parking.
  43. More trees!
  44. Speed bumps on 17th & 18th st north or McDowell. Constant speeding and disregard for stop signs.
  45. TREES! Parking
  46. Shade and trees
  47. Narrowing the traffic lanes to 10′, converting 1 lane in each direction to exclusive use by buses & emergency vehicles, adding fully separated & protected cycle tracks, widening sidewalks.
  48. More mixed use retail, trees, and protected bike lanes
  49. Reduced speed limit.
  50. Pedestrian entrances to businesses! Better crosswalk/light times. Anything to help normalize pedestrian traffic. Walking on McDowell is terrifying.
  51. Economic development and small business initiatives
  52. Clarification of parking availability and which stores can be accessed from which back alley parking lots.
  53. McDowell decreasing two lanes. Maybe in a decade when the city wakes up.
  54. improvements to store fronts, vacant or otherwise
  55. I’d visit more often I’d I felt more comfortable walking and biking.
  56. Narrowing McDowell through the area from 5 lanes to 3 is the number one improvement that would help this area. It’s a rare opportunity to brand a walkable shopping district in a city that has few
  57. Anything we can do to help get business into the vacant buildings would be great
  58. Designated parking lot for the miracle mile that promotes parking the car and walking along window shopping. Lot should be paved, well lit and have some art and landscaping to make it appealing. A directory in the lot describing the stores would be helpful
  59. Shade trees
  60. Work with the city streets department to narrow the automotive driving lanes to no wider than 10′ each, per NACTO standards. Change road configuration from 6 auto lanes down to 5 (2 through lanes each way and a center turn lane). Landscape most of the center turn lane. Add bike lanes and parallel parking. The Miracle Mile will never thrive again as long as McDowell Road is an automotive sewer serving only to whisk people onto the highway.
  61. Maybe a sign near near 12st and McDowell saying, “ Welcome to Coronado”
  62. Grid bike stations
  63. Trees
  64. Trees and shade. Professional signage instead of homemade painted signs for the businesses.
  65. Not sure
  66. art!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  67. Shade trees and better signage for all active store fronts
  68. Budget for Holiday lights and a Information Kiosk
  69. seating and shading in the easements. Maybe some small walls. There is a lot of conspicious space there that would let others know about stores being open
  70. I would like to see subsidized rent so some cool creative businesses control the vacant stores.
  71. More murals.
  72. convert travel lanes to on-street parking 🙂
  73. Trees! Redesign of McDowell with parking protected bike lane.
  74. Outer two car lanes replaced with parallel parking
  75. Freestanding art/sculptures. We have some great murals already but it would be nice to vary the type of art in the area.
  76. Increased Street Artwork
  77. Fix the asphalt
  78. More Trees
  79. Common areas/pedestrian plazas https://www.google.com/amp/s/tedsummaries.com/2014/06/18/janette-sadik-khan-new-yorks-streets-not-so-mean-any-more/amp/
  80. Signage making it very clear that there is a place to park
  81. Fix some of the city-owned parking lots and get the obnoxious paint store on the northwest corner of 16th Street and McDowell under control. Their store looks horrible, they block the alley and their trash can is in the city on the parking lot
  82. Shaded seating areas. Improved condition and signage of parking areas. Slow down traffic. Hawk crosswalk at 14th street.
  83. Shade canopies
  84. Interesting lighting such as the old fashioned gas lamps
  85. Lots of shade trees. Just general clean up and revitalization. Lots of good things going on, but there need to be a focus on making the are pretty and walkable for families.
  86. Less barred storefronts, more patio dining.
  87. Shade! Maybe seating.
  88. More shade.
  89. Park improvements
  90. More restaurants, Art Galleries and public meeting places on McDowell
  91. A cohesive look for all building and storefronts…Attract new, established businesses! That’s most most important, things with light foot traffic. (Attract businesses with census studies & other pertinent statistics) Then all these things would be completed with almost zero effort.
  92. Volunteer center that works as a community support hub, and social assistance. We need to consider crime prevention and creating a safe environment .
  93. A pedestrian light controlled crosswalk between 16th st and 17th st. Would allow better foot traffic for neighboring business and easier to get to the bus stops. I see pedestrians jay walk in this area often. McDowell is a wide street and heavy on vehicular traffic.
  94. Speed bumps or a crosswalk. Super dangerous to cross McDowell and I constantly see people doing it.
  95. Shaded areas to walk from storefront to storefront
  96. cross walk on 17th street McDowell rd
  97. Crosswalk
  98. Lighting
  99. Better signage to promote the area!
  100. Clean up of existing streetscape and alley improvements. Less branding with toppers more beautification with paint, art activation and cleaning up existing planters.
  101. Alley’s improved please! Lights and paved