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FEDA talks downtown revitalization

FAIRMONT– The Fairmont Economic Development Authority discussed the direction of different groups in the Downtown Revitalization effort and approved one loan on Monday night.

The building group discussed brainstorming small projects to improve aesthetics and help with energy efficiency and safety items. One project was to develop wooden coverings for broken windows on the second floor of a building. Another project was to fix broken steps due to different safety issues.

The identity group also discussed the idea of two different groups working on two different murals. Along with that, there were ideas discussed on enhancing the Cardinal logo in the downtown area.

Some events are also being planned as part of downtown revitalization. One of those included would be a block party for Memorial Day weekend that would include multiple blocks. Other events that were discussed were through the Red Rock Center for the Arts that discussed bringing back Fridays in the Park events that were approved by the Fairmont City Council. This would include musical entertainment and concessions and will be held in Citizen Park.

The FEDA board also approved a Cares Act loan for Gemini Studios. Gemini Studios is a sole proprietorship owned by Bruce Abitz that is a video production and installation of video and sound system installation. Abitz looked for a $10,000, 0 percent interest loan to assist with the offset of loss of revenue and help pay expenses as a result of COVID-19. The business was negatively affected by COVID as a result of the school’s closing which led to the reduced need for video production of sports and other large events. The loan proceeds according to the application would be used for building property renovation.

Gemini Studios was chosen to participate in the Small Cities Development Program grant, which is a grant awarded to the City to help rehabilitate commercial properties. As part of the program, the building owner is required to match 20% of the total project. In this case, that amount is $10,000.

FEDA will meet next on Monday, May 10 at 4:30 p.m.

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