Making special places on 3rd Street

Making special places on 3rd Street

MARQUETTE — The City of Marquette has been chosen as one of eight communities in the state to take part in a special program.

A $3,250 grant was earmarked in cooperation with Michigan State University and the Michigan and U.P. Realtors’ Associations. That grant and funds to match it will be helping to bring unique attractions to 3rd Street.

“We’re looking at a form of placemaking called ‘Lighter, Quicker, Cheaper,’ which takes areas of the public domain and private property and conducts experiments, treats it as a laboratory to try out different ideas,” said Gil White, a consultant working on placemaking projects for the MSU School of Planning, Design and Construction and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority. “It could be food, it could be music, it could be art, it could be as simple as just providing seating in an area where there is no seating, so it’s meant to be an experiment to see what works and what doesn’t work. It’s low cost and low risk.”

“It’s an exciting concept of an experimental little ‘parklet’ out along the streets, and they can move it around and see where it works and where it doesn’t, and it really is a placemaking thing where people will gather and sit and be comfortable while walking up and down third street, and it will just make it more of a community place,” said City of Marquette Mayor Mike Coyne.

“It’s going to be just a place that is going to be interesting and fun and somewhere where you want to be,” Mona Lang, executive director of the Marquette Downtown Development Authority, said.

The project is a part of both the City and the Arts and Culture master plans. Before the placemaking can begin, sites need to be chosen and the purpose of those sites decided upon.