City progresses with revitalization
Bob Barber, with Orion Planning and Design in Hernando, was back in Holly Springs before the mayor and board of aldermen to propose improvements in the downtown revitalization and landscaping plan.
He has assisted the city in developing a 20-year plan and also participated in the Main Street Charrettes planning.
Some ideas that have been discussed by the mayor and board of aldermen and at community town hall meetings include changes that would enhance the appearance of downtown.
Proposals include making advancements on public space in the town square and in some thoroughfares entering the square.
There has been no attention to the square in a long time, Barber said.
However, the city has repaved the parking lots and streets on the square and leading off the square and provided decorative brick-like crosswalks as recently as a year ago. Cherry trees were planted on North Memphis near Rust College.
Barber said the city square is unique.
“It’s a treasure,” he said.
Some expected proposals include changing parking spaces, expanding modern street lighting, adding green space in the form of landscaping and phasing in underground utilities.
Barber said there would be two phases to the proposal – a conceptualization and a rendering of the plan and then the design and construction phase.
Barber would not be involved in construction, he said, but could oversee it. Orion could be involved in identifying potential funding sources.
Mayor Kelvin Buck reviewed the proposed project.
In the conceptual phase Orion would show what the city would look like. They would help get construction documents in Phase 2, depending on what the board of aldermen approves.
He said Barber could help in finding a contractor to do the construction.
“I think it is important to have someone who understands architecture,” Buck said.
Alderman Tim Liddy asked whether Barber has ever worked with facade issues, those involving public/private partnerships.
Barber said he has partners who help with that aspect.
“We can pick a focal piece and visualize and get interest,” he said. “As the board moves forward, you will have the top designer ever. You will be pleased, I can assure you.”
Buck presented videos created by a number of cities to highlight their venues. The marketing video would be prepared by CGI free to the city. Local organizations and businesses would finance the video by purchasing advertising space on the video that would be loaded onto the city’s website. Businesses could add their own videos.
Buck said the Rotary Club, Main Street Chamber and Tourism would likely want to purchase an ad. The company provides mini videos for both the city and departments it wants highlighted and the organizations and businesses.
“It’s the wave of marketing now,” the mayor said.
The city would have the product for three years and then could come back and revamp its video, if it so desired.
The board of aldermen unanimously approved a motion to move forward on the video.