Visions of San Pierre's Future
Main Street Improvements - Eliza Street
Trees are the lungs of our cities. They give off oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide and other pollutants from the air. Street trees cool sidewalks on hot summer days, and warm our paths during winter months after their leaves have fallen. Flowering trees mark the seasons with their fragrant blooms in the spring and their vibrant colors in the fall, creating an ever-changing town center.
Street lights can also serve to inform the public about community events with colorful banners and signs. Benches provide places to sit and watch the world go by. A main street is not just a means to travel from A to B, but a place to inhabit, a place to meet your neighbor and to meet strangers, a place to occupy and to enjoy. A good street is a lot like a good front porch. A good street should be lived in.
Cobblestones maintain healthy soils beneath their surface, and cause automobiles to slow down, creating safer streets for pedestrians and cyclists. Despite common misconceptions, cobblestone streets do not cost any more to maintain than paved surfaces. In many cases, individual cobbles can be pried up, replaced and shimmed as streets weather and wear. They can even be plowed in the winter.
The historic corner bank building could be restored and reused as a community center. Studies show that visitors to historic properties tend to spend almost twice as much in a town as non-historically-minded travelers. They tend to stay in B&Bs rather than at discount motels, they shop at antique stores rather than strip malls, and they eat at local diners rather than fastfood joints.
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© 2008 The Institute for Small Town Studies