Plaza money sought

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 21, 2010

FERRIDAY — Progress is one word Mayor Glen McGlothin would like people to think of when talking about downtown Ferriday.

“We are very lucky we still have a viable downtown,” he said. “We don’t need to let it stay dormant and ugly, we need to make it something attractive.”

With two recent grants already received, one for $15,000 and one for $24,000, McGlothin is currently awaiting final approval on a third that would help the town finish work on its new project, Rockabilly Plaza.

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“We sent the plans and they approved the project, we just haven’t gotten the final approval yet,” he said. “We have done everything we were asked to do, and now we are just waiting patiently.”

The new grant McGlothin applied for from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for $124,000 would go toward constructing the rest of the plaza.

“With the money from the $24,000 grant, we have already constructed bathroom facilities for the plaza,” he said. “The new money will be for the roof, lighting and fans.”

McGlothin said he hopes Rockabilly Plaza will be a place Ferriday residents can use for family reunions, birthday parties and other events.

“It will just be a place for people to gather,” he said. “We have never had that here, and we are concentrating on making the town more presentable.”

McGlothin also said the plaza will have a pavilion, tables and chairs for everyone to use and enjoy.

“We are going to put speakers in so we can have music playing throughout the year,” he said.

The plaza will also house a farmer’s market in the springtime, McGlothin said.

“I have already talked to four or five vendors from the area,” he said. “We want to get them in town, I know we can have people spend money in Ferriday.”

McGlothin said the Rockabilly Plaza is not the only thing he has been working on to make the area more presentable.

The $15,000 grant Ferriday received is going to be used to help bring up to code Concordia Hotel.

“The building was donated to the town,” he said. “We are using the money to put in new lights and improve it so people can use (the building) for events.”

McGlothin said he would also like to host more music events in Ferriday.

“We want to have something at least every other month,” he said. “It will just give residents something more to do. It gives a little more activity to the area.”

More businesses are also heading to the area, McGlothin said.

“We have a new Family Dollar coming into town,” he said. “We have businesses looking at lots on E.E. Wallace Boulevard.”

McGlothin said any new business is an asset to Ferriday.

“Someone bringing a business with two or three jobs is still two or three jobs we don’t have,” he said.

With a list full of improvements that keeps getting bigger, McGlothin said Ferriday is on the right track.

“We are just trying to put the pieces together,” he said. “It seems like things are starting to come along.”