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MALTA: Takin' it to the streets

On Wednesday, June 6, Malta's town planner, other town staff members and area residents will be walking the downtown area in preparation for a public discussion to be held on Sunday, June 13, at 6 p.m. regarding the Downtown Green Space and Economic Development Plan.

This is an opportunity to look at the downtown again and plan for community gathering areas and an overall clean up of the downtown with park benches, landscaping and period lighting, said Heather Mallozzi, director of building and planning for the town of Malta. "It is also an opportunity to market the downtown to bring in the types of retail business the community is looking for."

The downtown area encompasses several miles around the Dunning Street/Route 9 intersection.

Funding for the plan will be provided in the form of a grant from the state Quality Communities Program. The $50,000 grant requires a partial town match of $12,000 for a total project cost of $62,000.

The town has named Synthesis and River Street Planning and Development to serve as consultants to the town on this project. With town staff and residents, the consultants will create a plan that will help identify a sense of place for Malta's downtown and identify areas of public green space. Additionally, the plan will address the economic development within the downtown area. The plan will not replace existing downtown plans but will work in conjunction with them.

The June 6 walk will begin at 6:30 p.m. and is scheduled to end at 8 p.m. Information gathered during the walk will be brought back for discussion the following Wednesday, June 13, between 6 and 9 p.m. Mallozzi encourages residents to turn out for both the walk and the follow-up discussion.

"We want community input because this is their town and we want to know what they want there," she said.

More information about the plan or the meeting dates can be obtained by contacting the planning department at 899-2685 or by visiting the town's Web site, www.malta-town.org.""

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