Construction has already begun on Cedaredge’s long-awaited streetscape project. Photo by Jon Nelson.

Construction has already begun on Cedaredge’s long-awaited streetscape project. Photo by Jon Nelson.

By Caitlin Switzer

CEDAREDGE—(July 16, 2013)  That brand new community messaging sign on Hwy 62 is not the only thing new around town—Downtown Cedaredge is about to get a Main Street makeover.

It has only taken 12 years of hard work and planning, Cedaredge Town Manager Katie Sickles said.

“It is very exciting,” Sickles said. “The Town has waited more than 12 years to make this dream a reality, and we expect the work to be substantially  complete by Oct. 4.”

The cost of the $1.09 million project will be covered in part by a $250,000 energy impact grant as well as a $20,000 anonymous donation, according to the Delta County Independent (July 3, 2012). In addition to pedestrian amenities, landscape and streetscape improvements, the DCI notes that project will include reconstruction of Main Street through Downtown, long-needed storm drainage improvements and resurfacing of Main Street to town limits.

Some of those who have worked to make the project happen are no longer with us, Sickles noted.

“Local government moves slowly, and we have lost some of our great champions,” Sickles said. “This project is a monument to hard work, dreams and the vision of improving our business climate and bringing people into the heart of our little town.”

The new variable messaging sign, located near the entrance to the Mercantile on Hwy 62, was the result of planning and fundraising by the Cedaredge Chamber and the Cedaredge Business Support Group, Sickles said, and has already proven to have numerous uses.

“We have no local TV or radio stations, so it is great to be able to post our events on the sign,” Sickles said. “We can use it for everything from mosquito spraying to Amber alerts.”

Thanks to a little TLC, Cedaredge can now show the world what locals have known for many years—that this is a special community where all are welcome.

“Almost 30 percent of our residents are age 65 or older,” Sickles said. “They are people with a great deal of experience and maturity to offer; we also have a very active student population. This is a gathering place for the whole area.  We have learned to work together and accomplish things. It is not about one generation, one political point of view, or one form of recreation. Our senior citizens got behind our Skate Park—it was not just the kids who made it happen.

“Not only is our landscape beautiful,” she said, “but we are able to bridge the generation gap.”