New Downtown Look

Click to see original imageProvo City has “cut the ribbon” to officially open the nearly-complete Center Street beautification project A and it is hoped the “new attitude” for downtown improvement will spread and envelope the entire area. Mayor Russell D. Grange predicted the beautification effort will begin a “chain reaction” which will include “an upgrading, beautification and rejuvenation” in businesses and homes and make Provo “the garden city of the west,” The term “garden city” harks back to pre-Geneva Steel days when Provo was called the “Garden City,” a term popularized by the Chamber of Commerce and others. After the advent of the steel industry, that label was pretty much sidelined as communities of the valley rushed to adopt steel and industry slogans. Considerable enthusiasm for the new downtown look was registered during the ribbon ceremonies. Provo was cited as a “forward moving city” and the merchants as a progressive group. A county commissioner saw the new beautification project as beneficial aesthetically and financially and a city commissioner recognized a “new attitude” which he believes will spread. Without doubt the project completion is a milestone for downtown Provo. Controversial though some aspects of the project may be. it has beautified Center Street and certainly represents an effort to “march forward with the future.” Property owners have been assessed $253,559 for the project and a federal grant added $231,849, giving an idea of the size an dimension of the effort. Now to keep pace. As we look about we see stores that need beautifying – not only in front but in back. Especially in back, in some cases. Interior block parking lots have made it pretty much a necessity to make the rear entrance a “second front” and no shabby back view is going to be in keeping with the new forward look. Recognition should be given to the many stores and business buildings which have been improved in physical appearance, both front and back, in recent years. Steps likewise have been taken to improve service and provide a more complete inventory. These efforts should continue. Presumabely such enterprise by the businessmen will spark customer support that will strengthen the air of confidence indicated at Wednesday’s ceremony. In keeping with Mayor Grange’s appeal, it is hoped the beautification and rejuvenation also will spread to the residential sections. There’s a big field here for improvement. Withal, if enough people catch the spirit, this can be the dawn of a new day for Provo. And it couldn’t happen to a finer city.