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Members of the Sacramento chapter of the Urban Land Institute presented the City Council last week with a list of recommended changes, specific to the flow of traffic along downtown streets, that they say will give the arena project and its surrounding developments a better shot at revitalization.

Strengthening the connection between the arena site and its surroundings, whether by car, bike, or pedestrian, would do doubt extend the energy into other parts of the city.

“We strongly believe that other improvements and other ways downtown, around the arena, can be revitalized and would greatly benefit and maybe accelerate through the implementation of some of our recommendations,” noted U.L.I. spokesman Jeff Goldman.

Specifically a complete redesign of 4th street to reconnect with the downtown grid.  Other recommendations include making 5th street a two-way street to the north of J street, creating a “front door” to the arena site.  And also, extending the Plaza on 7th street.

“Making the 700 block of K street more of a back door Plaza, or entry-way experience,” said Goldman.

Some of the recommendations by the U.L.I can be done with redevelopment already planned, but other suggested improvements would be more of a long-term project where cost could be an issue.  Regardless, the prospect of drawing in more business and commercial vendors is seen as a must to the arena project by the U.L.I.

“It will take these dozens of little improvements that really make a downtown area enjoyable,” expressed Goldman.  “ A thriving place, a place people want to be and keep coming back to.”