by Ellen Matis; September 13, 2019
You could argue that looks aren’t everything — but in Bradford, one of the northern gateways to The Pennsylvania Wilds, local leaders are taking major steps to improve the façade of the downtown while preserving the historic architecture that so many small towns within the Wilds adore.
One such step is a streetscape project within the nationally-registered historic district of Bradford.
“There have been no significant streetscape upgrades done on Main Street since the 1980’s,” said Anita Dolan,
Community/Economic Development Manager and Main Street Manager for the City of Bradford. “While much work has been done to develop businesses within the district, the streetscape and its improvements for walkability and traffic calming are much needed to round out the Main Street program’s efforts.”
The Main Street program, a driving force behind economic improvements in the downtown, has been in existence since the late 1990’s in Bradford.
The streetscape project is being completed in two phases: The first on Main Street from Mechanic Street to Festival Way, and the second from Festival Way to East Main Street. The first phase, which has already gone underway, includes replacement of sidewalks, refurbishing of light poles, installation of decorative arms, bases and globes on the light poles, installation of decorative brick concrete along the curbing of the sidewalks at some intersections as well as installation of new trees, decorative street furnishings such as planters, bike racks and trash receptacles.
According to Dolan, Phase I of the
project is being funded by a $1.75 million Redevelopment Assistance
Capital Program grant and is scheduled to be completed by mid-October,
and Phase 2 is scheduled to begin next spring.