New public plaza unveiled for Main St. in North Little Rock


City leaders in North Little Rock hope to transform the downtown area with a newly designed public plaza on Main Street.

Monday night, Mayor Joe Smith unveiled the design of the space at the city council meeting.

"Five years from now, you won't even recognize our downtown," said Smith.

The eye-catching development has been under development for five years.

In a 3-D video tour, it's laid out with patio swings, water spouts, a water wall, and outdoor eating area. It will also have audio/visual capabilities to accommodate any event.

For Smith, if you build it, they will come.

"It's certainly a huge economic tool for us, and gives us an opportunity to sell North Little Rock," said Smith.

There's $2 million already set aside for the unnamed project, but it'll require more money once the design is finalized. There's no estimated total as of yet.

"It's going to give an opportunity for people to want to live downtown and enjoy the downtown, which a lot of our millenials are likely to do," said Smith.

“I fell in love with it, so I'm actually about to move to Argenta Flats myself pretty soon," said Jun Pyo Kim, manager of Kamikaito.

The newly opened restaurant Kamikaito sits right across the street from the plaza's expected home.

"That empty lot, I mean--it's a, in my opinion, it's a little eyesore," said Kim.

Seeing as how that eyesore will be transformed, Kim says it'll be a win for the restaurant. He looks forward to more foot traffic in the area.

"[I] think it'll do something similar to uh--like what it did in Chenal/Promenade. I think it's going to be like a Promenade for North Little Rock almost."

Smith says the projected completion date is December 2018.

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