BUTTE — Butte is developing a master plan for its historic Uptown that will upgrade infrastructure, encourage more local shopping and tourism, help local businesses and improve the overall appearance.
“All of those things together in one vision-driven document that actually has actionable objectives, this is the vision for our community, and it gives you some way to ensure that happens,” said Butte Community Development Director Karen Byrnes.
The city hired the consulting firm DHM out of Durango, Colorado, to help put together the master plan. Several local organizations and businesses have contributed suggestions they believe will be helpful. Many want Uptown to be more pedestrian-friendly to encourage more foot traffic.
“We look at doing a pedestrian lighting system Uptown. We don’t have that right now. We have arc lights that light the street and not very well sometimes, so that’s been identified across the board for a lot of these different groups,” said Byrnes.
Some business owners say improving the look of Uptown would help.
“Things like benches, better ADA-accessible intersections, better streetlights, pedestrian lights, things along those lines. I also think beautification of Uptown could really be a great improvement,” said Jon Wick, owner of 5518 Designs.
So having a pedestrian-friendly Uptown that’s safe and convenient to get around in is important to Butte’s economic future, especially after the difficult year of the pandemic.
“I feel like Uptown is on the cusp of something great, we’ve got a lot of people working hard to organize and prioritize and really help the Uptown business district take the next step forward, and I think coming out of quarantine and coming out of the Covid year we’re really some great things Uptown,” said Wick.
The Uptown Master Plan Public Meetings are scheduled for Tuesday, May 25, 6-8 p.m., in the Butte Brewing Conference Room, and a Zoom Meeting planned for Wednesday, May 26, noon - 2 p.m.