Focus groups weeks away for Devils Lake downtown initiative


“We have spent loads of hours assembly the individuals, speaking about what they’re feeling about downtown — previous, current and future — and what the alternatives are shifting ahead,” stated Jonathan Holth, a Grand Forks advisor and co-proprietor of Toasted Frog eating places. “There’s numerous positivity. Individuals are energized about downtown Devils Lake. That is a very essential first step in a course of like this, a recognition that downtown is necessary. We have heard that loud and clear from the group, and we’re excited for the subsequent steps.”

Holth, who’s partnering with Mark Schill of Praxis Technique Group, Grand Forks, says they’re understanding logistics and plan to arrange focus teams within the subsequent few weeks.

“We’ll maintain a few of these focus teams and public conferences at totally different locations and totally different occasions with a view to catch as many individuals and get as a lot suggestions as attainable,” Holth stated. “We need to ensure that everyone seems to be concerned on this.”

Paula Vistad, government director of the Devils Lake Space Chamber of Commerce, stated a number of one-on-one interviews occurred this summer time however downtown improvement has been on the town’s radar for years. She stated the town is on board with the statewide Primary Road Initiative.

“Our foremost road has seen a decline as nicely, and we might wish to see that constructed up. It is by no means going to be the primary road it was 25 or 30 years in the past, however no matter that imaginative and prescient could be, we’re hoping to revitalize it into one thing new, one thing totally different,” she stated. “We now have a stupendous, historic metropolis. We now have lovely, historic buildings down there, and we hope to seize these and convey the downtown again to life.”

Household options

Two themes which have emerged thus far are a downtown park, or some kind of inexperienced area, and household-pleasant options.

“There appears to be a common understanding from the general public that the downtown must be a spot that is welcoming for households,” Holth stated. “So, if there’s alternatives for extra household programming, I feel we’ll take a look at methods we will obtain that. There’s a variety of alternative.”

Vistad stated the town already moved its farmers market to the parking zone of Leever’s North with the thought it will definitely might transition to a everlasting area downtown.

“That’s our hope to have a inexperienced area. Whether or not it’s for a farmers market, bands or a splash park sooner or later, that’s our objective,” she stated.

Holth stated an general challenge plan might be in place as quickly as this fall or early winter. He stated it probably will embrace a mixture of…



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