Downtown sign expected to help build community, participation

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Rochester Main Street, a local nonprofit, commissioned Renaissance Signs to create and install the sign. (Courtesy photo)

ROCHESTER - Rochester Main Street recently erected a 'Welcome to Downtown' sign near Central Square, in downtown Rochester.

According to volunteers, the design is consistent with the City's recent "wayfinding" efforts throughout downtown. It also includes a letter board to advertise community events.

Jennifer Marsh, Main Street board member and Deputy Director of Economic Development for the City of Rochester, says the sign is meant to not only welcome visitors to downtown but also to keep them informed of ongoing efforts.

"The Main Street organization needed an effective way to tell people about our events," said Marsh. "The sign will help us spread the word about the Festival of Trees, Free Comic Book Day, Zombie Walk, and so many events and initiatives throughout the year."

Ralph DiBernardo, owner of Jetpack Comics, said the sign fits well with the evolving aesthetic of downtown and will be helpful to people visiting for the first time.

"It looks great," said DiBernardo. "We've needed something like this for a long time. It's great to see Main Street working to beautify and enhance the downtown. These kinds of efforts benefit every nearby business."

According to Marsh, the board of directors is developing a policy for sign use.

"We may allow certain uses of the sign for different initiatives and volunteer groups," said Marsh. "We want it to be used for downtown-centric events and happenings. We're currently using the sign to encourage holiday shoppers to shop small and support our independent businesses."

Marsh added the sign "needs to benefit the entire downtown and not just one single business."

Rochester Main Street, a local nonprofit, commissioned Renaissance Signs to create and install the sign. Volunteers worked with City management, Building & Licensing Services, and the Historic District Commission for proper permitting and approvals.

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