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Planning Commission Approves Design For Gateway Arch

The gateway arch will be placed next to the already built LED sign on Northway and Grange Avenue.

After almost a year of planning a gateway arch has been approved by the Planning Commission and will be placed next to an LED sign, in an effort to bring more visitors to the Village Center.

The commission voted 5-1 Wednesday night to send the Village Board a recommendation for approval of the design; Commissioner Bernard G. Schroedl voting against it.

The arch will be placed on Northway and Grange Avenue next to the new LED sign.

Staff came back with two more rounded designs.

The recommended arch will have the brick piers from the second design (see attached PDFs) and square posts from the first design. The brick will match the brick on the LED sign, and plaques will be placed on the front of the piers reading est. 1938. The commission could not decide on what the back of the sign will read and it will remain blank for the time being.

Grandhaven, LLC, property owners of the Village Center, will pay up to $75,000 for the arch. The Village of Greendale will take care of the remaining costs.

Schroedl objected to the arch because he said that the LED sign should have been reviewed with the arch. He also said having two signs with the same purpose next to each other was a waste of money.

“What we have to do is have the business people in the Village advertise and stay open long hours than what they are staying open,” said Schroedl. “That’s what brings people down.  Not an archway. Not an LED sign. None of that. It has to be their responsibility as business people… they have to be the ones to advertise and spend their money. Not taxpayer money.”

Commissioners Barbara Myers and Jane Kerwin also expressed objection to the already built LED sign, but supported the arch gateway. Both believe the arch is needed to bring people in.

Village President John Hermes, who from the beginning was against the LED sign, said the LED sign was water under the bridge. Hermes said it was the commission’s job to approve the "best possible archway we can live with for the next 100 years.”

, said Village Manager Todd Michaels. Around the same time staff proposed the  Instead some trustees thought it would be better to place the LED sign on the intersection of Northway and Grange Avenue. The LED sign was then approved in March without approval of the gateway arch or referring it to the Planning Commission.

The Village Board will review the arch on July 17. 

Robert Redford July 13, 2012 at 01:03 AM
All I will say is a sign or an archway won't bring business to Broad Street. Vibrant, desirable businesses will. Besides, it isn't the Village Boards job to do this, it is private enterprise. Or, lets TIF Broad Street and bring in new businesses local residents and visitors want to spend money at. I see a fools errand here by a Village Board that doesn't have an economic development plan.
Piggy Bank July 14, 2012 at 02:42 AM
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Piggy Bank July 14, 2012 at 02:51 AM
I agree with most everything said about the LED sign (terrible), businesses (undesireable, poor hours of operation), the arch (not going to make me shop there) and the anger towards the Village Board on this and a rash of other recent decisions. However, the type of government we have in Greendale is headed by a Village Manager that oversees the day to day operations and makes recommendations to the elected officials. So, while much has been directed at the Village Board (appropriate), it appears that the Village Manager should be held accountable for this scattered approach to what we are made to believe is economic development. What do a Walmart, Southridge facelift, LED sign and gateway arch have in common? Nothing. While the board is responsible for action the manager is responsible for these recommendations. So, if your going to throw out the board don't forget the day to day person.
Carol July 14, 2012 at 12:45 PM
I agree with Dawn. Most traffic comes down Loomis Road from the freeway, and is a busier intersection so more people would see it. Has this been thought about? Probably too late to change since the sign is already in place.
Greendale Original resident July 20, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Great ideas, Evonne! Maybe suggest them to the Village Manager and the Village Board to pursue. Those places would bring people to the Village...and to Southridge, so a double win. And for Southridge, how about more stores for women to shop at, like Dress Barn, Coldwater Creek, White House Black Market, etc....not just shoes and kids' stores!!

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