Community Gives Input On How To Spend Watertown's $10M

Community Gives Input On How To Spend Watertown's $10M

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Deciding how to spend $10 million to revitalize downtown Watertown is a big job and consultants are getting help from the community to figure it out.

About 80 people attended an open house Wednesday night to voice their opinions on what to do with the state grant.

"We're in the Watertown High School environmental club and we were talking about it and just different ideas and unique things we thought that we could contribute to the city," Madeline Fitzsimmons said.

Groups went to four different stations that focused on Public Square, the riverfront, and streetscapes.

They had a chance to see some of the revitalization ideas on paper.

"These are general designs that the consultants came up with," local planning committee co-chair Kylie Peck said, "but they're really big-picture at this point, five, 10 years down the road, this is what our community could really grow to be."

One of the big-picture ideas is shutting down the south side of Public Square and making two lanes of traffic in both directions on the north side. 

It would create an area where events could be held and a downtown that's more pedestrian friendly.

"Closing of the south side of the square seems very provocative," business owner Todd Phelps said. "I hadn't thought of it before, so now looking at it from their perspective, I think it's a good idea." 

The final community input event is Thursday night. Consultants present all the ideas they've gathered so far.

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