|Small, inexpensive changes to enhance downtown
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|Author:||TwinCity [ Tue Nov 19, 2013 3:37 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Small, inexpensive changes to enhance downtown|
Ideas of what could enhance downtown, immediately. Only include relatively inexpensive solutions.
1. Building Lighting
Especially on historic buildings, downtown would be more visually striking if the modern and historic architecture features were lit at night. The tops of the Ohanlons, Steven Center and 8 W. Third would make the skyline appear larger when lit. Architecture details like the elephant heads on One West Fourth and historic and the geometric lines of the BB&T tower could also be featured.
2. Remove over sized trees.
It feels a little unkept. I think two have come down recently on Fourth street and it makes the corridor feel even more urban. One was removed at the corner of Spring and Fourth, the other in front of the Stevens Center. I do like the urban canopy idea but only with larger trees on secondary downtown roads. Hopefully the ones surrounding the old courthouse will fall as well.
3. Advertise in empty store fronts
Dont leave storefront windows empty. You see this in Malls. Put up signs saying "exciting new store coming soon" or "Future restaurant"...something. Also, set up temporary gallery space fronting the windows where artist can hang work for free or for a very low fee.
4. Remove all chain link fences
|Author:||Fourth and Main [ Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:53 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: Small, inexpensive changes to enhance downtown|
Toronto replaces street trees every 7 years. The roots are too big and out of room around that time. Maybe Winston-Salem should consider replacing them every 6 years.
I agree on the lighting. The first building that really should be lit-up at night is the roof of the BB&T Financial Center. I really wish someone at DWSP would talk the building's owner into lighting that roof. The building is the 4th tallest and disappears at night on the skyline. The parking decks lighting-up the ReynoldsAmerican Plaza give that building a beautiful appearance on the skyline. I wish they would install uplighting on all 4 sides of the building themselves. That could look really nice. Another tall and dark building that disappears is the Marriott. Maybe uplighting the ends, which are hallways and not room windows, could look good? I also agree on the Stevens Center. There are plans to take advantage of unused space, move the elevators to a new structure along the western end of the tower and use the former elevator space to expand the lobby. That would be a good time to add lighting to the top floors. Recently, people were sharing photographs of beautiful skylines at night and I decided not to post Winston-Salem, because it's so dark. Lighting has the added benefit of creating a feeling of safety for suburbanites visiting a downtown. For this reason, a number of cities created lighting commissions to talk building owners into adding lights.
At least one city has an experimental program offering vacant storefronts through a shared time rental. It can save a business maybe 66% on rent. The back has storage space and a store can rent three days and a gallery can rent two days and another business can rent that same space for the weekend. When their rental time is up, they lock-up their store contents in the storage space and the next business then sets-up their store. It was discovered the businesses renting the shared space often kept longer hours, since they only had a few days in the space. Pop-up galleries is also a great idea. Allow artists to have openings in vacant storefronts. With people there, the owner has a greater chance of actually finding a tenant and filling that space.
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