On Tuesday night, designers behind the proposed “Hagerstown Cultural Trail” presented their master plan to City Council, in hopes of moving the project forward.
The trail will feature a variety of art along the half-mile stretch from the downtown area to City Park. There will be 20 security cameras, as well as rapid flash beacons at crosswalks, for pedestrian safety.
“I am most excited to see the connectivity between the north end of downtown and the south end of downtown,” said city council member Kristin Aleshire. “I think there’s been a disconnect for some time.”
Mayor David Gysberts said that the land was formerly a swamp, before industry moved into town.
“We’re really re-envisioning what this stretch of land can be, and that will have consequences for generations to come,” he said.
It’s scheduled to open in the fall, but city officials hope that in the long run, vacant buildings around West Antietam Street will be rehabbed – and new townhomes will be built around the area.
“We’re taking a liability and turning it into an asset,” Gysberts added. “We’re really creating an attraction that enhances the value of not just the surrounding properties, but the entire area.”
City ordinances for the Cultural Trail’s land purchases and construction are scheduled to be on the agenda in future council meetings.