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Updates approved for Collierville’s Washington Square

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A deteriorating segment of Washington Street in downtown Collierville will soon receive a face lift.

Last week, the Collierville Board of Mayor and Aldermen approved the final site plan and development agreement for a nearly 1.5-acre segment of Washington Street near the town’s Historic District.

The property is just south of the town’s water tower and includes Mensi’s Dairy Bar. While not technically in the town’s Historic District, the property is directly adjacent to and surrounded on three sides by the district.

The site plan calls for the existing site and two of the five existing buildings to be updated.

None of the buildings currently on the property will be demolished. However, improvements will be made to the building facádes.

“The remaing three buildings will also be updated, hopefully in the near future,” wrote Mark Underwood, owner of Poperty Solutions.

New sidewalks, gutters and buffers will also be added along the street.

“Rough hewn” cedar or cypress materials, like those used at the nearby Dixie Pickers and Dyers, will be used for accents and trim.

Mensi’s will be repaired. However, its original design will be maintained.

“The existing five buildings within the Washington Square site all have a more suburban oriented aesthetic,” Underwood noted. “Ultimately, the focus of the project will be to transform each of the buildings into an appropriate historical architectural style that would be in keeping with the current architecture reflected in the Collierville Town Square.”

Additional open space, outdoor dining, bicycle racks and trash cans will be added as well.

There will be five handicap parking spaces and improvements made to the parking lots.

Scott Henninger, town project planner, called the current parking lots on the property “substandard and difficult for pedestrians to traverse.”

There are currently 86 parking spaces on the lot. Property owner Allen Green has proposed cutting that down to 50 spaces.

The first phase of the project will include landscaping, light work and curbing.

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