It may still be hard to envision, but “downtown Mauldin” is continuing to take shape — at least in concept.
City officials are interviewing four to five development teams and hope to make an announcement this summer on a plan to redesign the area around Main Street and Butler Road as a pedestrian-friendly urban village, said Mauldin economic development director Van Broad.
The designated area for the transformation runs from the corner of Butler Road and Main Street over to Mauldin City Hall and the fire department and then north to Jenkins Street along the railroad line on Murray Drive.
It’s a stretch dotted with small businesses like the Thumbs Up Coin Laundry and the Distinctive Details auto detailing shop, and a 3.5-acre storage unit facility — not an area that currently feels particularly green, urban or walkable, in other words.
But Mauldin officials think they can change that, and point to two places outside Atlanta that they say show what can be done.
Mauldin’s economic development team has looked at Smyrna and Woodstock, Georgia. The two northwestern Atlanta suburbs are comparable in population to Mauldin, and have seen their downtown areas change dramatically.