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Design team seek plaza ideas

December 10, 2012
Steve Schulwitz - News Staff Writer , The Alpena News

ALPENA - Alpena Plaza Palooza round two will take place for three days at the end of the week, as the design team in charge of collecting public input about a community plaza returns to gather more ideas, make preliminary sketches and unveil some of the ideas on how the plaza could look during a public presentation.

The design team from Michigan State University will arrive in town on Thursday and will sit and talk to community members on a one-on-one basis to gather ideas from the public. Some of the ideas will be utilized in some draft work Thursday night and Friday morning until more one-on-one visits take place. The design team will then spend more time bringing the ideas together and show off some of the plan at a community event at the library from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday.

Interim City Manager Greg Sundin said the first two days will provide people a chance to sit down with one of the team members and share ideas and maybe do some sketches and will wrap up with the first glance of what the plaza behind the Owl Cafe could look like.

"Saturday they will be presenting what they have and it could be one design, or it could be more than that," Sundin said. "There will be a powerpoint presentation and maybe exchange more ideas. These designs will not be final though."

Sundin said after this weekend the team will not return until spring when it comes back with even a better look at the plaza. Then, in early summer, it is expected the final plan will be unveiled.

"We're really entering an exciting and interesting phase of this," Sundin said. "Now people will be able to see the beginnings of what the ideas and thoughts they shared will look like. The designs Saturday will not be the final product, and in fact they may have more than one to show us. At this point the plan is ever evolving."

Sundin said anyone wanting to share ideas or information with a member of the design team can do so by visiting the Center Building on Second Avenue on Thursday or Friday between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. There will be three stations available for the meetings, which Sundin said could last from five minutes to a half-hour spending on the exchange of ideas. Sundin said the Alpena Plaza Palooza also has a new Facebook page available in which people can receive updates and share ideas and concerns. Search "Alpena Plaza Palooza" and like the page.

Steve Schulwitz can be reached via e-mail at or by phone at 358-5689.



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