The downtown of the Town of Normal, located in central Illinois, had been in decline for decades, but is now experiencing a turnaround with new commercial and residential investment. The recently constructed Uptown Normal Circle is a dramatic symbol of Normal’s comeback. Uptown Normal Circle integrates transportation, stormwater management, and public space into a single project, addressing several public needs simultaneously. The new roundabout links two previously disconnected segments of downtown Normal, resolves the once-awkward intersection of five streets, and calms vehicular traffic. It serves as a gateway for people arriving in Normal from the new high-speed multi-transit station, Uptown Station.
The Circle captures, stores, cleanses, and recycles much of the downtown’s stormwater. And it provides a green gathering space enhanced by seating, shade, and a stream-like water feature that flows around the Circle. Several civic events have been relocated to the Circle and adjacent streets to maximize use of this engaging new public space. It ties together the public and private investment that is reinvigorating this growing community.