In January 2020, the Wilmington MPO and the Friends of the Wilmington Rail Trail kicked off the development of a multimodal master plan for the downtown rail corridor between 3rd Street and McRae Street. The effort is being funded by the WMPO’s federal Direct Attributable funding and a donation from the Arts Council of Wilmington and New Hanover County. The plan is intended to address the feasibility for use of the corridor by bicycles, pedestrians, and future passenger rail service. The final plan will offer potential alignment and points of access, as well as recommendations for the integration of public art into the corridor.
The development of the plan has been guided by a steering committee comprised of WMPO, City of Wilmington, and NCDOT staff, as well as members of the Friends of the Wilmington Rail Trail, the Arts Council, and citizen advocates for the project. Stakeholder involvement and the understanding of existing conditions and constraints has been incorporated into the plan’s development thus far. The final step, and perhaps most important, is the inclusion of the public’s vision for the corridor.