This morning’s Merchant Mixer at Preston’s yielded much information, and so a hearty thanks to Curt Peters for emceeing and Preston Art Supply for hosting the gathering. Roughly 30 people were in attendance.
New businesses: Mike Kopp noted two new businesses moving into the spaces adjoining and above Colokial on Spring Street. One is called Dress & Dwell, and the other will be a wedding/bridal boutique (as yet unnamed).
Mike said a development company from Mishawaka had placed an offer for the old Reisz building on Main, with an eye toward rehabbing it into a senior citizens’ assisted living facility. The two frame buildings to the east would be demolished. Also, he noted that the Bobo building at 213 Pearl finally had received historic preservation tax credits, and would begin renovations into six housing units.
Finally, Mike provided these nuggets: The Impellizeri’s deal is off … the “Frenchman” is coming to the nicely repainted former Fish House space in the Bergman Building … Quill’s Coffee (also on Market St.) should be open in a few weeks … and establishments described as “Asian” and “steak” are interested in opening.
Flowers and landscaping: Mayor England told us that the fire department had gone out to water the $16,000 of flowers provided by Horseshoe Foundation (through Clean & Green?) because not all merchants were doing their share of watering. Michelle from Main Source observed that the bank would be ding landscaping around its building, and Dave Thrasher suggested folding this into a public art project.
Parking: A public parking map of downtown was handed out. It shows full-time parking lots and other places where there is free parking after 5:00 p.m.
Directional and way-finding signage: Scott Wood displayed the nice new directional signs that have been in the works for years; 29 of them will be erected “as rapidly” as possible in the next few weeks, as the street department can get to them. There’ll be a second phase next year, all of it funded by a grant from the Tourism Bureau.
State Representative Ed Clere then outlined the myriad difficulties in getting interstate highway signage for downtown New Albany, and said he’s working on it.
Doggie litter bags: They are to be hung from trash receptacles so that dog owners can clean up after their dogs. No mention was made of education to convince dog owners to do so.
(Part Two coming as soon as I get the notes typed)