Denison City Council approves grants for downtown beautification projects

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DENISON, TX -- The denison city council gave the green light to the Main Street board Monday evening to apply for more than a $100,000 dollars in grants for two downtown beautification projects.

Denison Main Street is applying for a $10,000 grant from The Union Pacific Community-Based Grant Program to add on a public arts element to the Streetscape Master Plan.

They're also applying for a $100,000 dollar USDA grant to continue construction on the downtown pocket park.

Main Street Director Donna Dow said for years residents have been bringing her pictures of downtown areas from cities they visit.

"They say 'wish we could look like this,'" she said.

So she applied for a grant to bring public art to downtown. It's a part of the Streetscape Master Plan approved in March.

"So what we've chosen in our master plan is a musical element. It might be music notes or guitars or musical instruments," she said.

Public art will include sculptures, painted crosswalks and artsy gates and fences - all keeping with the same theme, she said.

"It softens the touch. It just makes it a place where people want to be and be comfortable," Dow said.

Donald Banman, with the Main Street Advisory Board, said if they receive the grants he thinks it will help attract more people downtown.

"It'll have that first impression where they'll see the amenities, the plants, the benches," he said.

Dow said she feels confident they can win the grant money, especially since they drafted tangible plans.

"They like to see documentation that this is not some off the wall project that you're just trying to get to fill their grant."

Dow said the city will find out in the next few months if they'll receive the $600,000 TxDOT grant to carry out the original Streetscape project.

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