Friday, Jul 01, 2016
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Bowling Green: Residents asked opinions on downtown

Bowling Green is surveying the public about downtown as the first step in updating its downtown master plan.

The city hired Reveille LTD., a planning consulting firm, to help update the downtown plan. The plan has not been updated since its adoption in 1989.

"The main issue is not to reinvent the wheel in the downtown," said Glenn Grisdale, head of Reveille. "We want to fill in the blanks and look at doing small things in a big way."

Reveille started the survey process in December and is hoping to present its preliminary findings in February and have a draft of the revised downtown master plan by fall.

The firm has collected about 150 surveys so far. The surveys are being placed in downtown businesses to get the opinions of shoppers and Reveille is surveying many business owners and members of local civic groups. The firm also is working with the student government at Bowling Green State University to poll studentsUniversity to poll students.

The four-page survey asks people in what kinds of stores they shop in Bowling Green's downtown and what additional kinds of stores they want.

"A large part of the survey process is to assist the businesses in finding out what the public wants in goods and services downtown," Mr. Grisdale said. "The city wants to make sure the downtown is economically thriving."

The surveys will be looked at by Main Street Bowling Green, an organization that promotes downtown. "We'll use some information to help the Main Street organization put together a strategic marketing plan," Earlene Kilpatrick, director of Main Street Bowling Green, said. "It's definitely vital to this organization that we are moving forward with the master plan update."

The master plan update will look at for the next 20 years. It will deal with several issues, including the sign code, design guidelines for downtown buildings, and parking availability.

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