DANA has consistently advocated for improved sidewalks and streetscapes as a quality of life amenity in our urban area. On this week’s Council agenda, there is a project called a ‘Street Patio’ being considered that would help further those goals.
In 2010, DANA took part in a charrette specific to Congress Avenue where the lack of sidewalk cafes was repeatedly highlighted. The vision document that resulted from that community-driven effort made six recommendations, which included “a dynamic pedestrian experience” and “outdoor dining” as top priorities for revitalizing this critical street.
DANA believes that while the pilot program being considered by council is being funded by a private business, the benefit of activated public space for pedestrians constitutes a considerable non-monetary value to the public. Numerous other cities nationwide have implemented similar programs for mini-patios and parklets.
We are pleased that our organization was invited into the conversation for the pilot and we look forward to giving further feedback during the evaluation period prior to a permanent program. This site is particularly well suited to this proposal and the two parking spaces being used are being mitigated with two new ones along 7th Street.
We look forward to this exciting development for downtown and the contributions it will make towards the pedestrian environment we all hope to enjoy on Congress Avenue.