Thursday, August 19, 2010
Byhalia organizes for Main Street
By SUE WATSON
Citizens of the Byhalia area are encouraged to be a part of the planning for Byhalia Main Street Association.
Kent Mathis, a member of the Byhalia Area Chamber of Commerce, is helping organize the charrettes.
“After talking with business owners, residents, and the various political parties for the past several months, I am excited to see this program coming to our city,” Mathis said. “I have toured several other cities that have taken part in the Main Street program and have come to an understanding that results are directly related to the amount of participation we see from the community. I encourage everyone to come to the meetings and help us make Byhalia all it can be.”
The town will meet with the planning committee to hold charrettes August 31, Sept. 1-Sept. 2. The meetings will take place at The Flame/Byhalia United Methodist Church.
Mississippi Main Street-sponsored charrettes operate on four key components – market assessment (helps understand the economic development factors affecting Byhalia/Marshall County); branding and marketing (aid in communicating its unique message); design and planning (enhance the physical appearance and function); and implementation strategies (ensures the recommendations of the plan include a roadmap to turn them into reality).
Each of the four components corresponds to one of the Four Points of Main Street – economic restructuring; promotions; design; and organization. It is the participatory nature of the planning sessions that makes the charrettes effective.
Citizens, business owners, elected officials, and Byhalia Area Chamber of commerce members help guarantee the program will turn up what the community values and that the community buys in and implements the program.
Some potential topics that may be discussed, according to chamber of commerce executive director Sarah Sawyer, are enforcement of town ordinances, the city park, Brunswick Downtown Park, street lighting with brands and banners, and the Old Byhalia High School with focus on the Byhalia Arts Council and use of the auditorium. Other items that may be discussed are downtown building facade, recruiting businesses, the walking track park, the outside stage and the playground, Mississippi Highway 309 and turning lanes in front of Byhalia schools, improved entrances to the town, clean-up of businesses and residential property, signage, downtown parking, tourism, sidewalks, town image and marketing, and community events.
Those who want more detail may contact Mathis, email@example.com or 901-415-3060.
Planning locations will be announced.
The Byhalia charrette schedule begins Tuesday, Aug. 31, at 12:30 p.m. and continues all day Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 1-2.
The Byhalia charrette team will hold public meetings Tuesday, August 31, at 6 p.m. at town hall and Thursday, September 2, at 6 p.m.
For a complete schedule or more information, contact the chamber of commerce, 662-838-8127.
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