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February 11, 2016
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April 13, 2016
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Meeting Minutes 3/8/2016

West End Business Monthly Meeting 3/8

Please find following the notes from the West End Business Association’s monthly meeting.

Present: Jonathan Blakeslee, White Heron Tea, Doug Roberts, PortsmouthNH.com,Monique Shevlin, Signature Title, Charlotte Hubbard, Sanford Institute for Savings, Sara Curry, Bikram Yoga, Eric Spear, City of Portsmouth, Councilman,  Campbell Lozuaway-McComsey, STREET,  Nancy Carmer, City of Portsmouth, Economic Development Coordinator, John Benford, John Benford Photography, Genevieve Aichele, New Hampshire Theatre Project

Tactical Urbanism Grant: PS21 has acquired a Tactical Urbanism grant of $5,000 for the West End in the area east of the Bartlett Street intersection. These grants are to make temporary improvements in in streetscape or urban amenities to judge the impact of such changes in our neighborhood. Mike Lydon is a leader in tactical urbanism and will serve as a facilitator on this project.

Mike Lydon will be looking to host a community input meeting in mid-May. We will keep you posted.

Zoning Changees: Councilman Spear joined the group to update us on major changes in zoning and streetscape happening in the West End in the coming year. The long-term vision of the re-zoning of our district and the Islington Street Improvement project is to help make the West End as vibrant a city locus as Market Square. Learn more about Character-based zoning here. The new zoning ordinances go to the first of three votes in May. The second vote will be a public hearing. Portsmouth Listens groups have been gathering input from local voices since February.

Islington Street Improvement Plan: ISIP has been approved, is funded and has been put out to bid. Find the full concept plan here. The utilities (and their age and complex layout) and the heavy traffic on Islington Street make this a tremendously complicated project, but engineering plans and owner-participation relationships are underway. The parking survey is complete and City Engineers are in the process of surveying all utilities, not just in the street, but directly up to the homes and businesses.

There are Federal NEA grants available for creative placemaking to make this disruptive project more pleasant for visitors and residents. We are a small city and it’s hard to access grants like this, but it is worth looking at the possibility. ArtPlace is a smaller, private grant organization and there is more likelihood of acquiring a grant from this organization. Who wants to take this on?

Please join us for our next monthly business networking meeting on
Tuesday, April 12th at 8 am at
Meet your neighbors, network and help us highlight all of the amazing work you’re doing in our community.

We meet the second Tuesday of every month, so type us into your calendar on repeat!

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