Community Members Support 10-Year Downtown Redevelopment Plan

Community Members Support 10-Year Downtown Redevelopment Plan

"I believe in the mayor and city council and I believe in the downtown and I think this is something we can move forward and to make things happen. Finally," said Pietro Priola, owner of Greens and Grains.

HAGERSTOWN, Md. - It was a packed room Thursday evening as the Mayor and the city's consulting firm, Urban Partners, presented a 10-year plan they hope will redevelop Downtown Hagerstown through eight catalyst projects.

And it's a plan that many support.

"I believe in the mayor and city council and I believe in the downtown and I think this is something we can move forward and to make things happen. Finally," said Pietro Priola, owner of Greens and Grains.

The eight catalytic projects are: Strategy for Office Development & Recruitment, Maryland Theater Expansion Project, USMH Expansion Support Strategy, Hotel/Conference Center & Heritage Center/Commemorative Park, Linking City Park and A&E District with Trail and New Housing, Expanded Downtown Arts/Events Programming Strategy, Expanded Operations of the City Farmers Market and Expanded & Targeted Home Ownership Support Strategies.

The Mayor said the project will cost about $125 million. And that's a number that concerns some community members. 

"I feel like the funding plan right now is very vague and I'm looking for more details on how they're going to get those private investors. I'm encouraged that they are depending mostly on private investment and not so much public funds as they have in the past," said Lynda Givens Evans, Hagerstown homeowner.

And the Mayor hopes this 10-year road map will help bring confidence back to the downtown area.

"It's a challenge to get people to think beyond what we currently see in front of us or to think beyond where we've been in the past. And so we gotta think bigger of ourselves we gotta think more of ourselves, we have to believe that we're worthy of level of investment that we're talking about," said Mayor David Gysberts.

Officials said this project will also generate 875 new jobs in the area.

Here’s a link to the full report: 
http://www.hagerstownmd.org/DocumentCenter/View/2321
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