South Slope

cover of south slope plan document

South Slope Vision Plan

Happening Now/

On March 28, 2023, Asheville City Council asked staff to provide more time for community members in the Southside to get acquainted with the contents of the plan, before staff comes back to Council for consideration of the plan’s adoption. Staff is currently working with Southside United Community members to accomplish this task. 

UPDATE 10/20/23:

The most recent draft of the South Slope Vision Plan can be found HERE 

Watch staff’s March 28 presentation to City Council here .

If you have comments or questions, please email Steph Dahl at her contact shown at the bottom of this page. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How will the Vision Plan be used once it’s adopted?

The South Slope Vision Plan is a record of the community’s vision for the area. Neighbors and City staff will use this as a tool to guide and evaluate their growth patterns in the years to come- whether at community meetings, public hearings, or elsewhere. Some pieces of the plan are aspirational and the specific visions may not necessarily come to fruition based on the available funding and priorities of the community and City Council, yet they provide critical information that serves as a visionary framework for long-term development. 

What is the approval process for the plan? 

The Vision Plan will be reviewed by the community and by several bodies.  The Asheville Downtown Commission and the Planning and Zoning Commission will review the final draft plan and make a recommendation to City Council.  City Council is the final reviewing body and will hold a public hearing on whether to adopt the plan.  

Why is this called the South Slope Vision Plan? What other neighborhoods will be interested in this plan? 

The name “The South Slope” had been coined by the businesses and residents in the core part of the study area over the past decade or more.  However it is clear that the study area includes two larger neighborhoods, overlapping and interconnected: on the south, The South Slope is a part of the larger, historical Southside community. Community members in the residential portion of Southside regularly meet under the banner of Southside United.  This section of the mixed-use district was primarily Black and has a rich history being celebrated by many, including Southside United, the South Slope Neighborhood Association and the leaders of the upcoming Black Heritage Trail Initiative. The study area to the north overlaps with Downtown Asheville. Other neighborhoods that are adjacent are the S. French Broad and WECAN neighbors to the west, and East End Valley Street and Oakhurst to the east.    

The South Slope Visioning process is a planning process led by the City of Asheville with the community and business stakeholders in the South Slope study area to develop a long term vision for the area.  The process started in late 2017, and is now coming to completion.  Work on the plan stopped during the pandemic; that work was re-booted in March 2022. Once community review of the draft plan is complete,  it will be presented to City Council for adoption.  Staff acknowledges that the primary community engagement on this plan occurred five years ago, and the time-lapse between original engagement and the present day requires staff and the community to perform extra levels of engagement in order to ensure that the plan is still relevant and that the community still supports the plan.  Once adopted, Staff will work with the community to prioritize key initiatives and help implement the community’s vision for the South Slope. One initiative is already underway: design and engineering of Coxe Avenue as a Green Main Street. 

The objectives of the South Slope Vision Plan are to:

  • Assess and prioritize multimodal transportation and streetscape and intersection improvements (in coordination with the Asheville in Motion Plan).
  • Promote quality development by identifying preferred land uses, strategies for encouraging innovative and sustainable forms of development, and evaluating city-owned property for its highest and best use.
  • Contribute to a strong local economy by facilitating private investment, job growth, small business and entrepreneurship.
  • Preserve and encourage a unique sense of place by celebrating the people and culture of the area, past and present.
  • Ensure the safety of all who work, live and visit the district.
  • Assess existing and needed infrastructure that will support a growing tax base.

Community representatives on the original South Slope Advisory committee (pre-pandemic) are:

  • Rae Adams, Wehrloom Honey & Meadery
  • Greg Benton, NC-DOT
  • Brent Campbell, Downtown Commission
  • Brian DeWine, Asheville Tourists
  • Roy Harris, Southside neighborhood
  • Craig Jeffries, Asheville Downtown Association, Downtown Asheville Residential Neighbors (DARN)
  • Pat Kappes, Explore Asheville CVB
  • Rhea Lidowski, Chemist Spirits
  • Chris Medlin, NC-DOT 
  • Gillian Phillips, Buncombe County
  • Robin Raines, Downtown Commission
  • Leah Rainis, Asheville Brewers Alliance
  • Crystal Reid, Lee Walker Heights
  • Paul Roberts, NC-DOT
  • Meghan Rogers, Asheville Downtown Association
  • Austin Tyler, Mission Hospital
  • Jason Walls, Duke Progress

Contact Information

Steph Monson Dahl 

Director, Planning & Urban Design