The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has awarded Natick nearly $79K to use for installing street furniture, decorative lighting, and public art for permanent shared spaces on public roadways downtown.
The idea is to make the area more welcoming to regulars and visitors (and hopefully not too cluttered).
If Natick plays this cleverly, perhaps it could score a deal with Bernie & Phyl’s Furniture if its Rte. 9 west location at 45-61 Worcester St., winds up becoming a marijuana dispensary. But alas, that project is 4th out of 5 candidates in the most recent town rankings.
Natick is one of 36 communities divvying up $5.3 million in the state’s fifth round of Shared Winter Streets and Spaces program, which is designed to promote public health, safe mobility, and the local economy. Grants range from $5K to $500K.
The funds should go toward Natick Center enhancements that would sync up nicely with outdoor dining and public art efforts undertaken by the town and local businesses and artists over the past year.
Last year, Natick netted $55K through this program to build shared/separated bike lines on Rte. 30.