Traverse City Downtown Development Authority Looks to Improve Park Street

A popular street in downtown Traverse City could soon be getting a facelift. 

Friday morning, the Downtown Development Authority approved a half-million dollar reconstruction project for Park Street. 

The project would also include a crosswalk in the 300 block of East Front Street. 

9&10’s Caroline Powers and photojournalist Jeremy Erickson have more details on when they hope to get started and how businesses feel about the possible changes.

For many people heading into downtown Traverse City, they find themselves driving or walking along Park Street. 

"It is kind of the main walking corridor between the Park Place Hotel and Front Street."

Which is why the Downtown Development Authority wants to make the street better and safer for everyone. 

"It’s going to make it a lot more walkable because right now, if nothing else, the concentrate is all broken up," says Rob Bacigalupi, executive director of the Downtown Development Authority. "It’s not in the best of shape."

With plans to change most of Park Street, Taproot Cider is nervous about what construction could do to their business. 

"We just get a lot of foot traffic due to our location," says Paul Salvatore, general manager of Taproot Cider House. "While there’s construction going on, people may not want to sit out kind of in the midst of that."

Another added piece to the project – a crosswalk along East Front Street. Something Morsels says is needed. 

"Front Street is so busy in the summer with all this traffic," says Dalton Cooper, manager at Morsels. "With this instillation it could allow us to increase that walk-in factor and hopefully it’ll slow things down a little bit. I think it’s just sort of like a little highway straight to Morsels."

The project still has to go before city commissioners for approval. 

The DDA says they have a $515,000 budget for the Park Street changes and the crosswalk along East Front Street will cost less than $66,000. 

They hope to begin construction this spring.