Downtown Streetscape Construction Still Underway

Community

BY BRITTANY MATTIE SRQ DAILY FRESHLY SQUEEZED CONTENT EVERY MORNING TUESDAY JUN 18, 2019

Pedestrians and drivers alike couldn’t help but notice that the Main Street and Lemon Avenue intersection implemented designated roadblocks and downtown detours on Tuesday, May 28. Construction swifty took place that morning and is set to last a total of five weeks on a $3-million streetscaping project voted by City Commissioners—adding in new, red bricks onto the sidewalks, and removing the curbs to be at street level.

While the cosmetic rework will look and feel more pedestrian-friendly, the construction closures to the highly-trafficked intersection has affected area merchants for business—taking away a number of Main Street parking spots and blocking storefront walkways. Despite the divergent perspectives between taxpayers and City Commissioners of whether the streetscape uplift was truly necessary or not, Sarasota Farmers Market Executive Director Phil Pagano believes it will ultimately “enhance the market in many ways, including the redesign of Paul Thorpe Park.”

Earlier this year, the vendors relocated to avoid construction—shifting from State Street and South Lemon Avenue to the North side of Lemon and trickling down 1st Street. This move did not affect the size or scope of the market and Pagano hopes it does not affect the weekend attendees now either. He urges locals to continue coming out to Saturday’s farmers market during the continued construction process. “The vendors could really use the community’s help by attending as much as possible,” he says for those hesitant to head to the area for the coming weeks.

The intersection concept plan is said to be completed by July 4th weekend. And a reminder, the Sarasota Farmers Market is open year-round, 7am-1pm every Saturday, rain or shine.

 

Photo provided by Sarasota Farmers Market

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