City To Begin Working With NNEDD For Downtown Revitalization Grant

A community planner will be working with the City of Elgin in the coming months towards developing a downtown revitalization plan.
Jan Merrill, community planner with the Northeast Nebraska Economic Development District, told the Elgin City Council Monday night information collected during a community survey could be used towards securing a grant for downtown revitalization. Currently, she said Albion, Neligh and Creighton are in various stages of working on developing similar plans.
She said grants for these types of plans come in two phases. Phase one would consist of a $30,000 grant with a 25 percent match to be used to figure out what is most needed for the downtown area. Phase two would involve a $350,000 grant with a 25 percent match to make the improvements.
“That’s something we might want to take a look at,” Mayor Mike Schmitt said. One area of downtown improvement needed, he said, was curb and gutters, to be done before the State Department of Roads comes in to redo Highway 14. However, he cautioned that work on the highway keeps getting pushed back, saying it may be 2020 or later.
Merrill said one of the conditions of the downtown revitalization grant would be to designate the area as blighted, one of the conditions being that the buildings are over 40 years of age. The next step, she said, will be to review Neligh and Creighton’s study once it is completed, then proceed.
In other action:
Pool — Janet Koinzan prepared and shared a power-point presentation showing how other communities (Eustis, Albion, St. Paul, Stanley, N.D. to name a few),  have developed indoor pool/fitness centers.