Project Planned to Help Encourage Revitalization of Xenia Station/Downtown Xenia Area
Downtown and Xenia Station are two of Xenia’s greatest assets, although in some respects they are underutilized. A change is coming that will bring both of these locations and the area between them closer to realizing their potential.
The City secured $274,195 in federal grant dollars (matched with $68,182 in local dollars) to install lighting and landscaping enhancements along the Little Miami Scenic Bike Path between the Xenia Station Bike Hub and the intersection of S. Detroit Street and Third Street near downtown. The project will include decorative lighting, new trees and shrubs, and a small pedestrian plaza with bicycle racks and a gateway sculpture on Detroit Street.
This project grew out of the City’s 2008 Downtown Strategic Plan as well as long-standing security concerns about this bike path segment. The planned enhancements will improve the lighting and appearance of this bike path segment and its intersection with South Detroit Street. This will help to draw cyclists from Xenia Station into downtown and vice versa, while enhancing downtown’s southern entrance for motorists as well.
A similar previous grant-funded project brought enhancements to the bike path along North Detroit Street and another of Xenia’s greatest assets: Shawnee Park. That project enhanced the northern entrance to downtown for motorists and cyclists as well as the connection between downtown and Shawnee Park. Today that section of North Detroit Street is one of the City’s most attractive streets and a successful business corridor as well.
The current enhancement project is also part of the City’s current Brownfield Action Plan, which is identifying strategies and resources to encourage cleanup and redevelopment/reuse of vacant industrial properties in the area south of downtown. The enhancements will create a catalyst that will encourage reinvestment in the area between Xenia Station and downtown. The pedestrian plaza will be an attractive amenity for prospective users of the Eavey Building and/or surrounding properties, as well as a place for cyclists to park their bicycles when they want to shop at downtown Xenia businesses.
A committee of residents, business owners and property owners worked with the City and its consultant, Edsall and Associates to develop the design concept.
The City is now accepting bids for construction of the project, which is slated to begin in July and conclude this fall. Some temporary detouring of bicycle traffic may be necessary during the construction process and appropriate signage will be posted.