LANSING, Mich. ( WLNS) – Downtown Lansing will remain a destination through the winter with added lighting and displays through a new crowdfunding campaign, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Downtown Lansing Inc. announced today. If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $30,000 by Jan. 8, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program.
“It is more important than ever to keep our downtown districts safe and supported through the winter. This Light Up the Night activation will do just that for Lansing throughout the season and for years to come,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Michele Wildman. “We are pleased to bring this space to life and provide resources for this effort through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”
Lighting is a small change that can have a large positive impact on the look and feel of a street. During these challenging times, Downtown Lansing Inc. is looking to help its community come together to lift up the local businesses and downtown to provide hope, added safety, and a brighter experience with lighting enhancements along Washington Square.
This campaign will add bright bursts of color, seasonal light projections, and uplit trees for all those who live, work, and visit the downtown corridors to bask in the glow of colorful lighting displays as they shop, stroll, and enjoy their downtown neighborhood. These added features will be used for years to come, making winter in downtown Lansing enjoyable year after year.
“Lighting is a simple change that can have a big impact on the look and feel of a community. As we enter the winter season, we all need bright spots that make us feel less alone while adding to the sense of comfort, light, the safe feeling of our community,” said Cathleen Edgerly, executive director of Downtown Lansing Inc. “The Light Up Downtown project will add to the experience that IS downtown Lansing as our residents head outdoors for exercise or to safely support their downtown at all hours of the day.”
Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, nonprofits and other business entities can apply at https://patronicity.com/puremichigan.
“As the temperatures drop, it’s more important than ever to lift up the business community,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “This lighting project will send a clear message that downtown is open and inviting to residents and visitors alike.”
The Public Spaces Community Places initiative started in 2014 with MEDC providing matched funding of up to $50,000 for community improvement projects throughout Michigan. As of Nov. 30, 2020, MEDC has provided more than $8 million in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 256 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $9.3 million raised from 46,045 individual donors.