By Kevin Kelley
Have you noticed the bright red boulevard banners recently installed at the western end of Lorain Road?
The banners are part of a streetscape program made possible by a $150,000 Community Development Block Grant the city received earlier this year. Under the same program, Jack pear trees were planted in large orange containers and benches were installed between West 223rd Street to the border with North Olmsted.
Solar-powered Christmas tree lights were recently placed on the trees.
The city organized a contest this summer seeking designs for the banners and a citywide marketing program. However, the contest didn’t pan out, Mayor Eileen Patton said. Instead, a committee of residents worked with city officials on the design of the banner, which features a bungalow-style house. Its slogan, “A great place to grow,” was used by Patton in her first inaugural speech as mayor.
“We’re going to purchase more banners and place them throughout the whole city,” Patton told West Life.
A new kiosk has also been placed at West 229th Street featuring the banner, Patton noted.
“We got a lot with the grant,” the mayor said.
The $150,000 Community Development Block Grant was funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and awarded by the county government.
The city contributed $8,500 for streetscaping on the south side of Lorain Road between West 223rd and West 225th streets because that area, in front of the Lawn Village apartments, was not eligible for the federal funding under the rules of the grant.
The goal of the streetscape project, city officials said, is to reinvigorate the mixed-use commercial district and reduce storefront vacancies.