The City of Amarillo's North Heights Neighborhood Plan is now one ordinance reading away from being put into action after unanimously passing its first reading at Tuesday evening's Amarillo City Council meeting.
Now after more than a year of planning and community engagement, city staff is ready to begin improving the transportation, organization and economic development of the North Heights neighborhood.
Those are the three major improvement areas decided on by residents of that community.
Once the plan is added to the Blueprint for Amarillo, there will be special funding set aside for improvements.
"We don't want any time to go by without some kind of action, so we're going to start planning for the implementation of this starting this month," said the city's planning director AJ Fawver.
Some of these changes planned for North Heights include adding more sidewalks and bus stops, helping the residents organize and increase community involvement, and working to revitalize vacant buildings and lots.
There will also be several policy changes.
"Policies that incentivize redevelopment through maybe economic incentives," said Fawver. "Looking at our policies to make sure they allow and encourage what we're trying to get to happen there."
North Heights is the first of many neighborhoods the city will work with through its Community Improvement Plan.
Plans to improve the Barrio neighborhood just east of downtown are set to begin soon.
"It put together a neighborhood plan, a template if you will, not just to be used in North Heights but also in other areas of our city," said city council member Elisha Demerson. "The Barrio, San Jacinto, Pleasant Valley, East Ridge, Mesa Verde, you name it."
f the ordinance passes on its second reading next week, North Heights residents can expect to start seeing these changes implemented by the middle of this year.