Plans for phase two of streetscape, the wide-ranging Oak Bluffs downtown revitalization project, are underway with an expected completion date of May 2023, after the Oak Bluffs select board sent designs out to bid Tuesday evening.

Anticipated to cost $1.1 million, the next phase of the streetscape plan looks to widen sidewalks on Kennebec avenue, solidify parking and crosswalk changes to Lake avenue and reconstruct Healey Square. Plans for a third phase of the project, an overhaul of North Bluff including a potential new roundabout, benches and green space, came before the Martha’s Vineyard Commission land use subcommittee Monday.

Discussion about the project at Tuesday’s select board meeting focused mainly on Healey Square, where a full overhaul is planned. Designs show a version of the space that creates a corridor down the middle of the square, opening a sightline from Circuit avenue to Ocean Park.

“In the end we need to make a good, safe place for the people of this town to enjoy,” said select board member Jason Balboni.

As it stands, the square has four large locust trees in the middle with passageways on either side and space to sit on benches and brick walls throughout the center of the square. The new design would see 12 trees in the square, keeping the current locust trees. Existing plaques on benches in the square are planned to be included on the new benches, but the select board said it will also weigh options for moving some plaques to new locations.

Rendering of proposed Healey Square changes includes moving trees and benches from the center of the square to the perimeter.

In the new plan the trees and benches will be moved to the outside of the square with a planter acting as a centerpiece including the David M. Healey monument stones, and space for the Christmas tree.

“I was happy to see that the plaque is still going to be used,” said Mary Healey McNamee, daughter of David Healey.

Some speakers at the meeting scrutinized the changes, calling for the square to remain as intact as possible.

“As far as I can see, there’s nothing wrong with Healey Square,” said Tommy Brown. “It just needs a little cleanup.”

Citing the square’s tendency to draw groups of people for sit-down chats, David Morris worried that the streamlined design might impede on the character of the space.

“It is a gathering space,” he said.

But members of the select board noted that the square is in poor condition, and is in need of an overhaul to improve the safety of its sidewalk. Parks commissioner Amy Billings added that creating a sightline to Ocean Park is a major tenet of the project.

“The whole point of this whole design was … to see through to Ocean Park,” she said.

In a more granular discussion about the project, the select board weighed changing the plans to include brick as the square’s main surface. As it stands, the square will employ concrete pavers aestheticized to resemble brick.

“I think it needs to be fine-tuned,” said select board member Gail Barmakian.

But the board ultimately decided to move forward with the plan and send it out to bid, with the understanding that specific quotes for material changes and other minor design alterations can be requested as needed.

“I think we’re ready to move on this project, and the finer details can be dealt with as we move along,” said Mr. Balboni.

Bids for the project are due Oct. 13, after which the select board plans to award a contract within 30 days. Demolition of Healey Square will not begin until at least Jan. 3, 2023, but demolition for the other pieces of the project may begin in the fall.

The project is slated for completion by May 24, 2023. Bid documents are available on the Oak Bluffs town website.

Also on Tuesday, the select board heard complaints from neighbors of The Alley bar on Kennebec avenue, who spoke out against a newly implemented outdoor seating plan.

“Even with the windows closed we can’t sleep in [our] back bedrooms until the bar closes,” said Sheila Harding. “It’s like there’s an outdoor bar in our backyard.”

The outdoor seating plan at The Alley, which swapped 10 indoor spaces for outdoor seating, was approved on a trial basis by the select board last month. Owner Kelley Morris said she felt the plan had worked well since it was approved, but technical difficulties prevented her lawyer from speaking via Zoom at the meeting.

The select board decided to reschedule the discussion for its next meeting later this month.

Finally, the select board approved a transfer of $250,000 from the affordable housing trust to the Island Housing Trust for costs related to the southern tier affordable housing project. The money will be used for so-called “soft costs” in the project, including design and engineering.