HAYWARD, WI - The City of Hayward is receiving a $48,043 Vibrant Spaces grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) to transform a pedestrian walkway into a pocket park and gateway to the downtown.
The Vibrant Spaces grant program is designed to help cities and towns revitalize underused spaces to build community and attract future residents. Through this grant program, communities across the state of Wisconsin will be investing in their workforce attraction and small business development by creating inviting, walkable spaces in their downtowns, gateway districts, and economic centers.
“Investing in vibrant communities where people want to live, work, and raise families is critical to attracting and retaining workers in our state,” said Missy Hughes, secretary and CEO of WEDC, the state’s leading economic development organization. “These grants will help communities create new gathering places in thriving downtowns to draw in residents, visitors, new businesses and investments.”
As a part of ongoing downtown revitalization efforts, the City of Hayward aims to convert a pedestrian walkway into a vibrant pocket park and gateway to the downtown business district. WEDC’s Vibrant Spaces Grant will fund the restoration of existing infrastructure, including public restrooms and lighting, as well as the addition of local art, greenery, seating, updated signage, and a kiosk to advertise local events. This gateway will increase visibility and foot traffic to local businesses and provide visitors a place to relax and recharge while enjoying the downtown amenities.
Jim Miller, Alderman for the City of Hayward, welcomes the investment. “We’ve created a great partnership between various community resources; the city, Hayward Area Chamber of Commerce, the Hayward Business Improvement District and SCLCO Economic Development to highlight the Hayward Lakes area as a destination. We thank WEDC for recognizing our efforts. Funding from this grant will make the corridor along 3rd Street between Dakota and Main a more attractive and inviting place. The new wayfinding signage and improvements to the public restrooms will benefit our downtown businesses.”
The Vibrant Spaces Grant program is an initiative within WEDC’s Community Development and Investment (CDI) grant program. Projects were evaluated based on their ability to create visible and pedestrian oriented public spaces that attract and accommodate multiple users and activities. Successful projects demonstrated that they would benefit the local district, nearby businesses and the community as a whole. Communities were required to match grant funds and begin construction this summer.
More information can be found online here.
ABOUT THE WISCONSIN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) leads economic development efforts for the state by advancing and maximizing opportunities in Wisconsin for businesses, communities and people to thrive in a globally competitive environment. Working with more than 600 regional and local partners, WEDC develops and delivers solutions representative of a highly responsive and coordinated economic development network. Visit wedc.org or follow WEDC on Twitter @WEDCNews to learn more.