‘A Real Busy 2018’
City Receives Development Funding For Three Projects
Three projects in the city received $327,500 through the state Regional Economic Development Council program Wednesday.
City officials, in partnership with the Gebbie Foundation, received $140,000 for the West Second Street public piazza and streetscape improvements project. This project will convert a vehicle-centric area of downtown Jamestown into an appealing piazza with a pedestrian-friendly feel while maintaining multimodal function improving walkability and connectivity to the National Comedy Center and the Chadakoin River.
The proposed project would create a public piazza area between Northwest Arena and the National Comedy Center along West Second Street. The project would improve the aesthetics of the area by adding lighting, trees and installing an overhead canopy.
In June, when the Jamestown City Council approved sponsoring the funding application for the public piazza project, city officials said this area of the city would be closed to traffic during events at Northwest Arena or the National Comedy Center. However, when there is no event, the street would be open to vehicle traffic.
Sam Teresi, Jamestown mayor, said with the $140,000 from the state and the $560,000 local match from the Gebbie Foundation, the total cost for the project is around $700,000. The mayor said the piazza project is going to be added to an already busy schedule of development work planned for the downtown.
“It is going to be a real busy 2018 for the Department of Public Works and the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities. They have their own work schedule, CHIPS work and grant projects, including money from the (Downtown Revitalization Initiative),” Teresi said. “Jeff Lehman (city public works director) and Dave Leathers (BPU general manager) will be really challenged during 2018. Hopefully, Mother Nature will smile on us with some dry weather. It will be a challenging year for us with projects, like the completion of the pedestrian bridges.”
The Jamestown Renaissance Corporation received two funding awards from the state. One was for $100,000 to go toward the renovation of 10-12 W. Second St. The funding will go toward an indoor Jamestown Public Market, community kitchen, shared workspace, apartments and a Stones course.
In October, the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council had recommended to state officials that the renovation of the building receive $550,000 in funding.
“Although funding was reduced from our original request, JRC will continue to work with the developers to reallocate funds to support the completion of the project,” said Lisa Hatch, JRC executive director.
The second state grant was fully awarded for $87,500 for the Jamestown Urban Design Plan 2.0. This project will update and adopt revisions to the city’s 2006 Urban Design Plan that will guide downtown and riverfront development for the next decade. The first plan was designed by the architecture firm Goody Clancy, which was awarded the Best Community Plan for 2007 by the American Planning Association, Teresi said.
Sarah Gilbert, JRC grant writer, said the second design plan will included public workshops and collaborative planning to inform future revitalization efforts.
“JRC has used the 2006 Urban Design Plan as a guide for all of our work, and now that many of the goals in the original plan have been achieved, we are excited to receive this opportunity to provide a much needed update that will help to align stakeholders under a shared vision and strategy,” she said.