Canandaigua residents weigh in on downtown

That people said they love Canandaigua because of the lake may not be all that shocking.

And many also could make educated guesses that people love Canandaigua because of the unique small businesses, small-town feel and its history.

So, surprising, no; but information of this kind is valuable in validating a vision statement for the city’s future, particularly as it is applying for $10 million in funding, according to Matt Horn, who works with MRB Group, which is serving as a consultant for the city.

The city has been a finalist for the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) award three times, but no money has come Canandaigua’s way yet.

The missing piece may have been public engagement, and Horn has heard lots of conversations about the city and its future at five public engagement activities — including setting up a booth at the Farmers Market, YMCA and popular Canandaigua Wine Walk.

“We got some really spectacular feedback,” said Horn, briefing members of City Council and its planning/development committee Tuesday night.

The state DRI program helps cities revitalize their downtown through infrastructure improvements, building upgrades and other projects that ultimately create jobs in the community.

Horn is a former Geneva city manager who now works for MRB Group, which the city awarded an $8,825 contract for help in getting the city over the hump. Geneva has won the $10 million award in the past.

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