The City of Albion, Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District, Albion Economic Development Corporation, and the Boone County Development Agency hosted a town hall meeting on Tuesday.
Community planners Jan Merrill and and Lowell Schroeder from Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District Community planners met with Albion business owners and community leaders as they work on a downtown revitalization grant application.
In the recent Albion community attitude survey, participants were asked to rate existing facilities and services, as well as identify areas of community need and priority.
Survey results and conversations reflected that creating opportunities to improve aesthetics of the downtown area without burdening businesses. According to the survey, 92.3% of those surveyed said they would prefer to see grant funds spent on business facade improvements, followed by infrastructure improvements and housing.
These conversations are part of the preplanning stage of applying for a community development grant.
The Nebraska Department of Economic Development will award Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding to communities to improve infrastructure and businesses within central business districts later this year. Selected communities will be able to start Phase I strategic planning for downtown improvements with funding.
Community planner Lowell Schroeder said he sees great support in the community for this project.
“There seems to be a lot of support in Albion for downtown revitalization. There will be opportunities for people to be engaged throughout the project as planners meet with focus groups,” Schroeder said.
The public hearing for the grant will be at the City Council meeting on May 10 at 7:30 p.m.
“There is an opportunity for public input,” Schroeder said. “It would be good to have people there at the meeting to support Albion’s downtown revitalization.”