Our View: Downtown is turning the corner

Published 11:30 am Monday, May 14, 2018

The weather may continue to be crazy this spring and summer,but there is a certainly a positive energy in the air when it comes to downtown Winchester.

Good things are happening in the heart of the city and it has truly been a product of multiple individuals, groups and public entities working independently and together to make a difference in the community for which we all share a passion.

Buildings are getting facelifts and much-needed TLC.

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Several renovation projects are underway but perhaps none are as noticeable as the painting of the building on the corner of Broadway and Main streets. This large sheer surface was one of the most visible in the district and finally has a new coat of paint.

A variety of different groups of concerned citizens and business owners are working on a host of projects all designed to make the community safer and more beautiful. They are too numerous to name here but anyone who wants to get involved can easily find several opportunities to best fit their interests and skill sets.

New businesses are opening almost weekly it seems.

The newest addition is The Paint Bar, a hybrid craft store art studio on the corner of Cleveland Avenue and South Main Street.

Steve Atkins is hard at work renovating the building at 39 Main, which will be the home to an upscale gastropub of the same name.

Multiple other businesses are coming to town, expanding their offerings or looking for ways to better connect with shoppers.

The timing couldn’t be better.

Main Street Winchester’s Rock the Block returns Friday with its first concert of the year featuring The Fever. Other attractions will include giant Jenga, sidewalk art, bounce house, a food truck and beer tent from Lexington’s West Sixth Brewing.

Oh yeah, and there is a little gathering called the Beer Cheese Festival that will be here in less than a month, bringing tens of thousands of people to town. All local businesses need to prepare themselves to capitalize on this influx of traffic — and disposable income.

The list goes on and on; certainly we have missed many that deserve recognition.

Positive changes are taking place literally right before our eyes. Those who cannot see it need to take off the blinders and become part of the solution.

We have much work to be done, but continuing partnerships and positive activity will lead Winchester’s downtown to new heights.