RFP - Ephesus Church Road/Fordham Boulevard Small Area Planning/Traffic Analysis

RFP - Ephesus Church Road/Fordham Boulevard Small Area Planning/Traffic Analysis

Town of Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Additional information: www.townofchapelhill.org/economic_development and www.townofchapelhill.org/index.aspx?page=1130

Chapel Hill, a North Carolina community with approximately 55,000 residents, is a vital part of the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill region. Ram's Plaza was constructed in 1982 as demand for goods and services grew with adjacent neighborhoods. Additional properties including the Holiday Inn site, Colony apartments and the former Volvo dealership property have all reached their peak performance and the timing for redevelopment seems eminent. There exist demands for a redeveloped center to serve the area as a mixed-use neighborhood commercial service center with new residential, retail and office spaces. This new development should support a transit corridor located within a quarter mile of the area. The area to be studied includes Ram's Plaza with adjacent parcels, former Volvo property, Holiday Inn property, Colony Apartments, and Eastgate with adjacent properties. (See map)

This scope of work has been developed for an urban area planning/transportation study for Ephesus Church/Fordham Road Small Area Planning initiative in Chapel Hill, NC. Many of the following tasks can be performed simultaneously, thus expediting the completion of the study. It is estimated that the entire study will be completed in 9 months, barring any unforeseen complications or delays.

Scope of Services, Outline Format
The tangible result of the Ephesus Church/Fordham Road Small Area planning process will be a plan document that incorporates the elements described below. Interim products and graphics will be produced as necessary.

1. Purpose, Vision and Fundamental Principles
a. Purpose statement - The purpose of the Ephesus Church/Fordham Small Area planning initiative is to consider current transportation conditions, define future land uses and to determine solutions for the existing transportation network in order to encourage reinvestment in properties within the study area.

b. Vision Statement
The Ephesus Church/Fordham shopping area will be an integral part of an active and vivacious neighborhood where residents can walk for basic services and utilize public transit to other destinations. The premise is to see this area redeveloped, re-connected, more accessible and more supportive of transit and the surrounding neighborhoods.

c. Fundamental principles –
• Respect of the Chapel Hill environment and values,
• Assist in meeting market demands for retail, offices, and residences,
• Supports preservation of adjacent neighborhoods,
• Development which is supportive of public transit,
• Improves existing Level of Service (LOS) for the roadway and intersection, and
• Improves the quality of the suburban fabric of the planning area through better building design, connectedness and general accessibility.

2. Survey of Existing Conditions
a. Description of geographic area and city/regional context
b. History, historic resources, and background
c. Review and analysis of past planning efforts related to the study area
d. Review of current comprehensive plan land use designations, policies, and implementation steps that apply to the study area
e. Demographic overview of population and employment
f. Survey of existing property attributes such as land use, zoning, property value, building floor area, height,
housing condition, and number of residential units.
g. Analysis of existing transportation conditions.
h. Existing residential real estate market data that would help in showing demand for redevelopment.

3. Community and staff participation
a. It is anticipated that this initiative will be lead by a small working group of Town staff and others. This group is to act in a leadership capacity to capture community interests, market conditions and use this information to guide these planning efforts.
b. The expectation for this plan is to gather existing conditions, any related documents, planning initiatives, comprehensive plan, current Sustainable Community Visioning work, completed market analysis, 2035 LRTP transportation networks, planned transportation improvements and work with the business and neighborhood community to develop a future vision based around a acceptable transportation solution. It is anticipated that this planning initiative will last approximately nine months from beginning to end.
c. Community meetings – There will be an initial half-day meeting with Town staff to develop guidelines and expectations for this planning effort. There will be a minimum of three community meetings to: 1) clarify expectations for this effort and gain input, 2) Present concepts based on land, market and transportation analysis, and 3) To present final concepts that will be presented to Council for consideration. The selected Consulting Team will be expected to present to Town Council at least one time.

4. Future Land Use
a. Recommended locations for residential, office, industrial, commercial, and mixed-use developments. The mix of (business and residential) future land uses should take into account: any approved projects with residential component within the Town of Chapel Hill and how that affects residential development in this area, market projections and analysis for retail and office as completed by the Town of Chapel Hill Economic Development, any thoughts, concepts or agreements reached by the Sustainability Community Visioning Task Force and any approved transit plans.
b. Any recommended modifications to comprehensive plan designations, including defining the boundaries of the Ephesus Church/Fordham Planning area.
c. Future land use map in comprehensive plan compatible format
d. A development case study exploring various concepts for development of a yet to be determined key site in the study area. Utilize visualization and interactive planning software as needed.

5. Urban Character and Design
a. Recommended height, density, massing, and character for residential, office, and retail development
b. Recommended design guidelines for new development including, but not limited to, general recommendations for site layout, landscaping, fencing, scale, fenestration, and lighting. Examples of exemplary building designs from within and outside of Chapel Hill should be provided.
c. Three design schemes (minimum) for different sections of the study area illustrating the desired building characteristics of that sub area.

6. Real Estate Market Analysis
a. Analysis of future real estate market forces to reinforce needs (The Town's Economic Development Officer has secured or acquired retail and office market data in the last 12 months)

7. Transportation, Transit, and Parking
a. Development of options for roadway/intersection improvements
b. Analysis of future transit options related to projected growth and redevelopment occurring from this plan. (This should include any impact or recommendations for Transit.)
c. Bicycle and pedestrian facilities analysis and recommendations

8. Livability – Public Realm Improvements, Environmental Quality, Aesthetics, and Public Safety
a. Evaluation of potentially problematic streetscape environments and suggestions for improvements.
b. A discussion of environmental quality, including current existing environmental monitoring and studies.
c. Evaluation of opportunities for preservation of key views and development of additional open space, and recommendations for gateway improvements.
d. Analysis of public art opportunities
e. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) scan with recommendations

9. Implementation Plan
a. Overview of implementation of the above recommendations
b. Proposed public improvements and financing alternatives
c. Timeline projections
d. Costs implications

Posted April 16, 2010

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