TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Downtown Terre Haute is getting a face lift as construction has started on the “Turn to the River” project.
This project will work to reconnect downtown to the Wabash River through public art and design.
There are five different phases to this project with construction underway in between Terre Haute city hall and the courthouse. Mayor Bennett describes this as an amazing project that will benefit the government campus.
“We didn’t just want to say lets just build a new fountain,” said Mayor Bennett. “Let’s figure out what we can do and Art Spaces has done such a tremendous job in our community to create these art pieces and these destinations.”
ST Construction Inc. is the primary contractor and is clearing the site outside city hall and laying the foundation for the project. The art work in front of the city hall will be constructed by artist Brad Goldberg. He’s created works of art in Oklahoma City, Dallas and others.
“This started back in 2013 actually, when we started getting ideas from people in the community,” said Art Spaces executive director Mary Kramer. “Started to begin bringing in professional artist and designers to draw out some of those ideas.”
The construction in front of city hall isn’t the only unique project that will be constructed in the downtown area.
“As part of our parking lot project, we’re carving out a piece in the middle that can be used for an event space. Whether its food trucks or farmers market,” said Mayor Bennett. “That will be right in the middle of the parking lot, that will gives us just some space to do a lot of different programming.”
Kramer says there will be small features including the installation of power posts with USB capabilities. The feature will allow individuals to change their electronics and hopefully bring the community to the area.
“We can’t really prove that this will happen but we also hope it will maybe hang you around the government buildings, will make people feel more apart of their government,” said Kramer.
The mayor says both the parking lot and construction in front of city hall is slated to be completed by this fall. The other four phases will be an ongoing process over the next four to five years.
The mayor says the estimated cost for phase one is around one million dollars and was funded through private funding, grants and the city of Terre Haute.