The Committee of the Whole discussed the possibility of adding signage by the new Southridge Mall entrance on Northway to attract mall patrons and drivers to the Village Center.
Village Manger Todd Michaels said last night that village staff has been speaking with property and business owners from the Village Center to see what can be done to assist them. In his presentation to the committee Michaels said that, "The Village has spent an excess of $80,000 over the last four years to benefit the Village Center, including such things as television commercials, brochures, event support by the police and public works department and the repaving of Broad Street."
Other projects that have been done to help the center has been adding flowers around the street lights from Broad Street to the new Grange Avenue entrance. Department of Public Works also had American flags installed in the high polls along the section of Northway.
The Village has looked into a full color display with a 16 mm full color at 5'11x11'10 at $35,500 and a 25mm full color display at $27,500. Michaels said either display would work.
The village is working with Grandhaven, the owners of the Broad Street area, to complement the new sign with their theme.
Most of the trustees agree that something needs to be done to draw more commerce to the Village Center.
Trustee Rob Barbian and other trustees said that it would go along with the Southridge redevelopment and the addition of Macy’s.
“It’s going to draw people who drive down Grange Avenue who don’t know the Village Center even exists,” Barbian said. “On days that we have Dickens for 4th of July we could change the sign (LED) to draw people.”
President John Hermes said he does believe signage is needed but the LED sign is not necessary. Some of the other trustees disagreed and believe that an LED will draw more attention.
“I think we have to have LED,” said Trustee Greg Turray. “The LED will draw attention. We need something to attract people’s eyes. Putting this into the 2012 budget is a small price to increase our retail and bring them into the village.”
The committee stressed that business owners need to do something about their store hours if they going to use tax payer money for signage to draw people in. Most business on Broad Street close around 5 p.m. and are closed on Sundays.
“Adding more money seems to be reasonable but it's based only upon good conversation with the business owners,” Hermes said. "If we are spending more taxpayer dollars to get more commerce to the Village Center those stores are going to have to consider their store hours.”