Archive for Thursday, May 15, 2003

Business community vital to downtown redevelopment plan

May 15, 2003

Eudora should be grateful for City Administrator Mike Yanez's continued interest in downtown. Earlier this month, he announced to the City Council he was investigating a Kansas Department of Housing and Commerce grant program that provides funds for downtown renewal.

It is not the first time members of the community have looked into the program, which could provide the city with as much as $200,000 for the facelift envisioned in BG Consultants' plans, revealed in March.

Yanez's leadership is key to keeping the matter active. But KDH&C expects downtown property owners and businesses to buy into the program with a pledge to upgrade their shops.

We would suggest downtown business and property owners could indicate their seriousness by the formation of a business association exclusive to the district. Money raised through membership fees and other means could be pledged as a match for hoped-for grant funds and promotional efforts. Active involvement in the district's betterment might persuade some property owners less conscious of appearances to join in the renewal effort.

The business community should be the first to recognize a good deal. An investment that could leverage a state grant is just that. We encourage downtown interests to work together to sustain Yanez's effort.

The city has scheduled a study session for 7 p.m. Tuesday at Eudora City Hall to discuss downtown development. This would be a good time for downtown business owners to voice their opinions.

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