Multi-million dollar construction project aims for makeover to city's downtown
ANNA, Ill. - Anna, Illinois City Administrator Steve Guined believes positive change is coming to his city.
"We're hoping to build a core in our downtown that will help attract new business and give the existing businesses here a boost," he said.
Construction improvements are part of the city's 10 year master plan. The first of two phases focuses on rebuilding two blocks of Davie Street named for the town's founder.
"We're going back to our roots - back to the street this whole community was based on," Guined said.
While he hopes to bring back the nostalgia, flower shop owner Lisa Morrison said the construction is a thorn in her side. "The foot traffic has really slowed down since this has started two and half weeks ago," Morrison said.
She owns the Enchanted Garden flower shop on Davie Street. She said the limited access to her store is keeping people away despite posting these signs.
"It's a very busy street for traffic going to and from school, dropping off kids, picking up kids and now there's nobody coming through," she said.
Guined knows the construction is creating restrictions on businesses and traffic, that's why he's urging patience.
Phase one of the project should be complete by the end of the year. Phase two calls for a complete renovation of six blocks of Main Street. That project will break ground in 2014.
Phase one will cost about $650,000. The city will pay roughly $120,000 with the rest coming from grants. Guined said phase two will cost just under a million dollars with the city paying about $200,000.