Changes to come after Brazil Main Street takes off
Mayor Tom Arthur said changes for downtown Brazil are ahead in the next few years.
Arthur said changes will take place in "baby steps. We'll start seeing little things."
These small changes, hopefully resulting in a revitalization of the downtown area between Depot and Vandalia streets will begin with the efforts of the Brazil Main Street organization, he said.
The group will elect its first officers 7 p.m. April 14 at the Riddell National Bank Community Room. Anyone is welcome at the meeting and to run for a position. The Brazil Times will print detailed descriptions of the positions April 6.
"(Brazil Main Street is) a group that really puts their focus on downtown to revitalize it," he said.
It's going to take the organization and private individuals to achieve this, he said.
Large changes won't be noticeable until two or three years from now when Indiana Department of Transportation can repair U.S. 40. During the first few years, the group will be understanding the needs of downtown and the next phase will be working to meet them. Finally eight years or so from now, significant changes should be seen, Arthur said.
The seed for the Brazil group was planted when Arthur received a letter about the Indiana Main Street group. He began meeting with local business owners and the group was created in February 2005.
Main Street member Vickie Mace said the organization's focus is to clean up downtown and attract new businesses. She said she encourages all to attend the biweekly meetings and join.
"I think the more people that come on board, they will see the improvement we can make," Mace said.
Mace along with Arthur and Jan Stapp attended a Main Street 101 meeting recently led by Indiana Main Street in Ellettsville.
Arthur said he was really intrigued by their four point approach to a successful revitalization; design, promotion, organization and economic restructing.
Mace said she is optimistic about Brazil's future.
"I'm looking forward to working with this group because I think we can make a difference," she said.
"I think it's foolish not to be a part of it," Mace said.