New lighting, sidewalks and facades on buildings; those aren't just one hometown's wish list. They're the town of Vinton's to-do list.
Change is a driving force in Vinton.
It's the perfect storm of two large projects coming together at nearly the same time.
The first, a multi-million dollar library, across the street from town hall.
The second, a $700,000 redevelopment grant from the state.
“When you couple the new Roanoke County library with our downtown revitalization program, we're just excited about downtown Vinton. I just think it's going to be good for our businesses and our citizens also,” Mayor Brad Grose said.
Add to this an overhaul of one of the town's main arteries.
Construction on a new Walnut Avenue bridge started last fall.
When it's done, the old bridge will be replaced, and walking trails connecting to the Valley greenway system will come into the town.
It's part of town leaders' bigger picture plans.
“Really, the next 18-months is going to transform the downtown into a new fresher look, a new destination -we'll have a library, and we are already talking to 4new businesses to come downtown so we're really excited about all the activity,” Town Manager Chris Lawrence said.
A groundbreaking ceremony for the library construction project is scheduled for April 3rd.
But, the town manager stressed it's more than a library for Vinton, with an expected 200,000 visitors a year. He says that could equal a lot of revenue in the future.