Archive for Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Grant presentation could help downtown growth

June 11, 2003

Revitalizing downtown Baldwin City will be a big topic at Monday's city council meeting with Marilyn Graham, the state's director of Community Development Programs, on hand to give an hour-long presentation.

Monday's meeting starts at 7:30 p.m. and Graham and another representative of the program, Jeane Stinson, are scheduled to give their presentation at about 7:45 p.m. The council meets at the Baldwin City Public Library.

"She's going to come down and let us know what's available as far as programs, block grants and other avenues of support," said Todd Cohen, city council member who is on the economic development committee.

Cohen said ideas will include making Baldwin a destination site for tourism, as well as other possibilities.

"This could be a jump start for that," he said. "The first step is to have the people come and give the presentation. Maybe it will serve as a catalyst to get things started."

Cohen is encouraging anyone with interest in revitalizing downtown Baldwin to attend.

"There is potential there with state aid," he said. "This is our money, so if we don't participate, someone else will get our money."

He also said that the new city administrator when hired will be taking a more active role in working with the Chamber of Commerce and others on such programs. The major efforts will be overall downtown revitalization with state help and refurbishing the now vacant lumberyard into an arts center (see related story this page).

Cohen also thinks it's important to get the efforts underway now, with changes that have occurred downtown.

"I think the summer play going to the junior high is bad for downtown Baldwin," he said.

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