Missouri Main Street Connection Inc. (MMSC) in partnership with AARP Missouri, is excited to announce the completed project from Clinton Main Street as part of the AARP Community Resiliency Project. AARP Missouri invested in projects that inspire change and improve communities for all ages. Clinton Main Street was awarded $5,000 to make their resiliency project a reality. It is important for communities to activate spaces in new ways to meet the changing business climate as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This grant was specifically designed to be implemented for the betterment of a downtown area by including community input and implementation while celebrating and encouraging inclusivity.
The Clinton Main Street JC Smith Park Community Project proposed improvements to the current JC Smith Park to become more useful to the community and local businesses while making it more spatially ideal for social distancing. JC Smith Park is a largely concrete area with benches, tables, and a swing which is fenced in on all sides with two entry gates. Having asked visitors what improvements they would like to see in the space, they identified shade and improved access as the two biggest issues. To address these issues and make the area more useful to the community and businesses, Clinton Main Street covered the area in large shade screens over the tables and seating. Clinton Main Street was able to take down sections of the fence and replace them with low planters that allow people to easily access the park and added additional lighting for evening events. A sanitizing station completed the project allowing visitors around the Square a space where they can rest and sanitize. This project had over 115 volunteer hours.
When asked if the project had an impact in downtown Clinton, Tina Williams, Clinton Main Street Executive Director said, “It was how we envisioned the space! Already we are seeing an uptick in people using the park and feeling it is a welcoming space. We anticipate seeing its full effect next month with our Olde Glory Days celebration when space for the public will be at a premium.”
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