The 100 Block Passageway is now a little brighter with festoon lighting installed. These zig-zagging string lights will add to the ambiance of the space from dusk till dawn.

If you remember, our nonprofit was awarded an AARP Iowa Community Challenge Grant this past August to complete improvements of the passageway, which have included a mural and lighting.

We partnered with PowerTech to install the lighting. The local business provided the materials and labor in-kind to get the work done.

“PowerTech was very excited to partner with The 712 Initiative on this project! We’re passionate about reinvesting in our community, and especially the 100 Block where some of the local businesses that we value reside. We hope that everyone who loves the 100 Block will enjoy it!”

– Josh Kallsen, President of PowerTech

These lights would not be possible without the additional partnership of T’z Sports Pub who has kindly taken on the energy responsibility of the lights.

Along with the lights a mural was completed in the Passageway in November. Local artist Tyler Kissel was commissioned to create a design to fit the space.

Enjoy – that is word being used in the mural. The word is front and center – big bold letters where the inside of the letter is a panoramic scenery. “I feel it’s like looking through a window to elsewhere while the word, font, or phrase is very much the message also.” said Kissel. “The mural has an aesthetic that can be appreciated in all seasons and times of day.”

The new improvements, along with existing benches, will encourage pedestrians to linger in the space. The lights will highlight the historic brick of the adjacent buildings as well as the new mural on the west wall.

“This is the first of what we hope to be many more unique spaces in the community. Thanks to the AARP Iowa grant and local partnerships, we’ve been able to bring more attention to the space and create an area people can enjoy while visiting the 100 Block.”

– Lynn Dittmer, Director of Redevelopment

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