First look at High Point Road improvements in Greensboro

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The first draft to improve the look of High Point Road includes widening and cleaning up sidewalks, as well as landscaping.

Voters passed a bond in 2008 to spend $7.5 million to make the section of road from Interstate 40 to the Greensboro Coliseum Complex look better. The projected start date for phase one of the project is 2014, said Chris Spencer, engineer with the City of Greensboro.

The corridor has long been considered an eyesore and is known for being crime-ridden. However, Spencer said this Streetscape Implementation Plan will change that.

"We will be removing a lot of obstructions on the sidewalks, widening the sidewalks, cleaning up the utilities and also doing some landscaping and some landscaping medians," Spencer said.

However, business owner John Hiatt said the draft shows he and others could lose some of his property.

"Instead of adding five feet to each side, they're going to be taking five feet of the property owner's property away from the west side of the street, and that's going to eliminate businesses parking," Hiatt said.

None of the bond money has been used yet, Spencer said. The city doesn't have a solid starting date for phase two because there isn't any funding yet, Spencer said.

Hiatt said he's also concerned more improvements could mean an increase in property taxes.

City council is expected to talk about the plan later this month.