Gainesville’s Bo Diddley Community Plaza is set to undergo a major renovation starting in March of next year. The project is expected to take about a year, and aims to fulfill several goals. The renovated plaza will be safer, more accessible, and more visible according to city officials. The new center will feature a green room for performers to get ready in, enhanced bicycle facilities, an improved layout, and a signature water wall. The water wall will be a focal point of the plaza, featuring water cascading down a mesh curtain into the ground, to be recirculated. Additionally, a new café and ticket kiosk will be added.
While most people are excited about the renovations, there are several hurdles. It is widely known that Bo Diddley Plaza has served as a gathering place for Gainesville’s homeless population, and many wonder where they will go during construction. There is a new homeless shelter on NE 39th Avenue that’s expected to absorb many of them. Additionally, there’s the issue of the Wednesday Farmer’s Market. A popular attraction, the Farmer’s Market expects to be able to find a temporary home in downtown Gainesville during the same weekly time, but hasn't made any concrete plans yet.