The Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) has awarded the Town of Pulaski a $696,846 grant through the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Business District Improvement program. The grant provides funding for several redevelopment projects in the core of the Pulaski Historic Commercial District, with the goal of transforming deteriorating buildings and infrastructure into an inviting, vibrant downtown core that attracts visitors, business investment, and new patrons for downtown businesses. The Town of Pulaski and property owners have pledged an additional $318,000 toward the cost of completing these projects, for a total investment in downtown Pulaski of over $1 million. The Regional Commission provided assistance in the planning and grant application process, and will provide grant administration support for the project during the term of the grant from 2018-2020.
The grant provides funding for several related redevelopment projects within the block of Main Street surrounding the Pulaski County Courthouse, between Jefferson Avenue and Washington Avenue. The projects include: improvements to the Main Street ‘streetscape’, with repaired sidewalks, and improvements to street parking, lighting and signage; repairs/upgrades for the alleys between Main Street and 3rd Street on either side of the courthouse; improvements to create a creekside walking trail in the alley between Main Street and Peak Creek; improvements to the bridges over Peak Creek on Jefferson and Washington Avenues to improve pedestrian safety and accessibility; the creation of a ‘pocket park’ in the vacant lot across from the Courthouse, and; repairs and improvements to the facades of 15+ commercial buildings in the project area. More detail on the proposed improvements appear in the ‘Pulaski Downtown Revitalization Master Plan 2017’ document, available at the following link: https://downtownpulaski.com/plan-library/.
The project builds on significant recent investments by the Town, property owners, businesses, and non-profits to rehabilitate downtown buildings, attract new retail and service businesses to the downtown core, and attract more visitors and customers to downtown businesses. Additional downtown-focused economic development strategies include targeted business recruitment to attract desired businesses to the downtown area, counseling and referral to support services for existing small businesses in the Town, coordination and marketing of downtown-based events and promotions, and providing incentives and grants to support rehabilitation of historic or deteriorating structures in the downtown area, especially commercial spaces for new business. These supporting initiatives are discussed in more detail at the project website, at: www.downtownpulaski.com.
For further information, please contact Patrick O’Brien ([email protected]) 540-639-9313, ext. 206.