Titusville Renaissance

Titusville City Council heard a presentation about placemaking services taking place in the City, thanks to an award from  the Northwestern Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

The City of Titusville will be undergoing some type of enhancement thanks to the Rural Rocks contest sponsored by the Northwestern Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

Titusville Rennaissance Inc. President Leah Carter told members of Titusville City Council at its July meeting that the organization entered the contest in 2019 for the opportunity to partner with placemaking services. The organization was notified of the win and a team from Alchemy Community Transformations came to Titusville in February to get started, according to Carter. “Then COVID hit,” Carter told City Council members. She attended the July meeting to let the council know that the project was “restarting.”

Placemaking services are defined as a way to promote better urban design. Placemaking facilitates creative patterns of use, paying particular attention to the physical, cultural and social identities that define a place and support its ongoing evolution.

With community-based participation at its center, an effective placemaking process capitalizes on a local community’s assets, inspiration and potential. The goal is to create of quality public spaces that contribute to people’s health, happiness and well being.

“Titusville is entering a new era of positive growth and rejuvenation and Titusville Renaissance Inc.  is very happy to provide this opportunity to our community to develop a plan and help get everyone moving in the same direction,” Carter said.

Carter was joined by members of the Alchemy Community Transformations via Zoom during the July council meeting. At that time, Vice Principal Community Placemaker Libby Crimmings explained some of the potential projects that could come to fruition through the placemaking project.

Crimmings said that the goals of such a project should impact economic and social development, increase the population, enhance tourism or improve the quality of life in the community.

Some examples of ways to accomplish these goals in Titusville could include some type of downtown revitalization, the addition of public art, improvements to housing, enhanced branding or marketing of the local region, as well as other localized ideas.

Some ideas that have already been tossed in the hat include a gateway entrance into town, a brewery space, renovating space on Diamond Street, murals, sculptures, addressing housing needs, restoring historic housing and other options.

Crimmings added that some projects would require more funding than others.

The next step is to solicit public feedback from community members through online surveys and virtual visioning sessions. The three-phase placemaking process will include community visioning and a capacity assessment and action plan created with the help of public input and guidance from a local steering committee of volunteers.

“We believe Titusville already has all the right pieces for success including a rich local history, unique amenities and attractions, and most importantly strong local leadership ready to take action,” Crimmings said.

Drumm can be reached by email at ldrumm@titusvilleherald.com.

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