Corydon council discusses new developments in downtown
By Kristen Cervenak, Editor, [email protected]
As the days begin to brighten with steps toward spring, so will the streetlights in some areas of Corydon, according to the Corydon Town Council, which met last Tuesday evening to visit various topics ranging from new LED streetlights to Easter egg hunts.
About a year ago, the council voted to transition to LED lights after a considerable increase in the electricity bill. The new light installation was occurring on the day of the meeting, Jan. 17, west toward Williar Avenue and Dutch Street.
In attendance at the town hall was council president Lester (Les) Rhoads, vice president Paul Hamann, board members Harlan Fisher and Hope Schneider, clerk-treasurer Treggie King and town manager Bruce Cunningham. Board member Doug Castetter and town attorney Chris Byrd were absent.
Cunningham provided updates on quotes he was collecting for the repair of cemetery gates and quotes for a long-awaited dump bed truck, the latter of which was approved for $56,972.48 by the council.
An annual report was also provided to the council by Main Street Corydon executive director Janelle Amy.
Main Street Corydon — with a mission to preserve, promote and enhance the historic downtown — works with the Town of Corydon and provides assistance to small businesses through educational workshops, hosting downtown business meetings and events to attract business.
The community profile shared a population of 3,162, a median household income of approximately $60,000 and a median age for residents of 43.5. The data also revealed reinvestment statistics in 2022 that included five facade improvements, 12 new businesses and three construction projects, creating a district business dedicated to 25% services, 16.1% eateries, 7.1% arts and entertainment, 12.5% community gathering and 39.3% retail.
“With the new businesses we saw, we can estimate that there are about 32 new jobs within downtown,” Amy said.
In addition, she reported that 46 events were organized by Main Street Corydon in 2022, including local favorites like Light Up Corydon and the annual Sweet Stroll, which will take place this year on Feb. 11. The 72 Main Street Corydon volunteers racked up 2,193 volunteer hours at a volunteer value of $32,895.
Fisher shared that the organization was a huge talking point at a meeting he recently attended.
“So pat yourself on the back, young lady,” he said to Amy.
Main Street Corydon’s goals for 2023 include the development of the organization’s committees, the downtown Corydon facade enhancement program and Corydon skate park, along with action plans in the town’s comprehensive plan and updating promotional materials of historic downtown.
The skate park was a topic of conversation from Rhoads as well, who shared the news that First Harrison Bank donated $10,000 toward the $350,000 goal to construct the park.
“They are selling bricks in various sizes with names engraved on them to help raise money for that,” he said. “Of course, then, the town will do the sidewalks and landscaping, so we’re working on that, too.”
Part of the process would be the removal of a hazardous building on the former Gerdon Auto property lot. Apart from structural issues with forward-leaning blocks after it was hit by a vehicle in the past, the possibility of lead-based paint is of concern.
Among other agenda items during the meeting, the council also approved the use of Rice Island for Old Capitol Church’s Easter egg hunt on April 8 and announced the Slemmons Street water project, located behind the VFW, is ready for bid.
The next town council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 7, at 7 p.m.