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City Council Approves 2023 Downtown Winston-Salem Plan

The 2023 Downtown Winston-Salem Plan was approved on Monday, December 4, by the Winston-Salem City Council.

The goal of the 2023 Downtown Plan is to provide specific strategies and recommendations to take Downtown Winston-Salem to the next level and build upon the success of the 2013 Downtown Plan.

The creation of this plan took into consideration previously adopted plans and sought public input through public meetings, surveys, interviews, and extensive committee work.

The Planning Committee broke down the Downtown Plan into three subcommittees: Growth, Connectivity, and Appearance.


2023 Downtown Winston-Salem Plan
A 5,000-seat amphitheater – This illustration reflects this Plan’s vision for potentially game-changing new amenities for Downtown. This is an artistic sketch, not a final design plan. Image from The 2023 Downtown Plan



  • Priorities: Promote small business, Focus on housing availability and variety, Utilize vacant office and courtroom space, Fill ground-floor vacant spaces and add storefront variety, Grow the food scene, Support new and existing festivals and events
  • Immediate Projects:
    • Re-use the vacant One Triad Park office building and Forsyth County Hall of Justice
  • What The Go-To is excited about:
    • Recruiting a full-service grocery store downtown (mid-range project)
    • Developing shared culinary kitchens and startups to strengthen the food and restaurant ecosystem (mid-range project)
    • Advocating for more affordable housing options downtown (ongoing project)



  • Priorities: Improve parking, Enhance public safety, Add pedestrian lighting, Promote micro-mobility, Improve pedestrian connectivity, Enhance existing parks, Create big new entertainment/recreation draws
  • Immediate Projects:
    • Review parking rates in other North Carolina downtowns
    • Improve parking access for physically disabled people
    • Create a task force to study the feasibility of additional drop-off and loading zones
  • What The Go-To is excited about:
    • Enhancing and modernizing the bridges across US 52; 3rd, 4th and 5th Streets (mid-range project)
    • Building a downtown outdoor amphitheater with a 5,000 or more seating capacity (long-range project)
    • Creating a downtown dog park (long-range project)
    • Developing a multi-use recreation destination that includes a national-level skateboard/BMX park, children’s playground, and adult parcourse (long-range project)



  • Priorities: Leverage the legacy of outstanding architecture. Refine design standards, Upgrade sidewalk dining, Add public art, Beautify the pedestrian experience, Further brand districts, Add trees and landscaping
  • Immediate Projects:
    • Establish a percent-for-art ordinance in Winston-Salem, with 1% of bond-funded public building and park construction projects set aside for public art
  • What The Go-To is excited about:
    • Allowing flexible sidewalk dining at designated times, such as on weekends, every month, or for special events (short-range project)
    • Requiring trees to be planted as part of new construction projects (ongoing project)


2023 Downtown Winston-Salem Plan
This rendering illustrates the potential for trees to be added along Liberty
Street. Image from The 2023 Downtown Plan


Picture of The Go-To Winston-Salem

The Go-To Winston-Salem

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