CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Side Main Street had one of its most successful years in 2013, Executive Director Stephanie Johnson told the Charleston Urban Renewal Authority Wednesday.
"The statistics show that we've had an excellent year, and we have exceeded every other year in the history of West Side Main Street," Johnson said, presenting CURA board members with the organization's annual report.
Most notable was the success of OktoberWest -- an annual fall West Side community gathering and fundraiser for the organization -- which showed a net profit of $18,000, according to the report.
Johnson also explained West Side Main Street's rebranding initiative. A new logo meant to be more indicative of the neighborhood -- not only the organization -- was designed this year, and a new website will launch in the beginning of 2014.
West Side Main Street finished 2013 with a net operating income of $81,639, Johnson said.
A full presentation of WSMS's annual report will be given at the group's annual meeting, which takes place Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. at the new Girl Scout facility, located at 321 Virginia St. West in Charleston.
In other matters Wednesday, board members requested to hear from Habitat for Humanity after the organization asked for CURA's permission use property on Piedmont Road for the expansion of a park after being approached by City Councilman Cubert Smith.
CURA gave the property to Habitat for Humanity so the house that once stood there could be rehabbed. Upon discovering it couldn't be, CURA gave a $10,000 grant for its demolition with the understanding a house would be built in its place.
"I'm not saying no to a park, but I do think we have an obligation to see it through from what we started it," said Diane Strong-Treister, vice president of CURA's board of commissioners.
In other business, CURA board members:
- Agreed to complete the sale of property to Pison Development for the construction of Shrewsbury Village -- a 32-unit, ADA-compliant senior housing project located on Shrewsbury Street near Dickinson and Lewis streets. Developer Bill Turner told CURA board members last month that construction would begin after the first of the year and be available for occupancy in 2015. A portion of the property that is in the public right of way (a result of a street-widening project funded by CURA) will be transferred back to the city, as well.
- CURA Executive Director Jim Edwards received approval from board members to research creating new urban renewal plans for the West Side and Downtown/Old Charleston. Edwards said current plans made in the 1980s were outdated.
- Edwards reported the West Side streetscape project's second phase is progressing with relocating overhead power lines as a top priority. This phase is set to take place on Hunt Avenue and move east toward West Avenue.
- The state approved use of city crews to build a walking path at East End Community Park, which is scheduled to open in the spring.
During an executive session, CURA board commissioners agreed to:
- Authorize the transfer of a lease at 702 Quarrier St. from Charleston Brewing Company to Black Sheep Burrito & Brew. The brewpub will close its restaurant, but continue to operate the brewery.
- Initiate a contract with an architecture firm to evaluate the structural integrity of 1590 Washington St. East -- a building located across the street from Bluegrass Kitchen that was purchased last month.
Reach Rachel Molenda at rachel.mole...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5102.