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Plan NH announces 2019 Merit Award recipients: City of Concord and Louis Karno recognized for Main Street Project

At its annual Awards evening, held this year on June 20 at the Capital Commons building in Concord, Plan NH revealed this year’s Merit Award projects.  The projects were selected from a field of nominations by a jury of diverse professionals within the planning, design and development industries.

The Merit Awards program recognizes outstanding  building projects that embody Smart Growth principles, Social Responsibility and/or outstanding cooperation or collaboration. These projects also demonstrate how what we build, where we build and how can have an influence on the health and vibrancy of a community.

Concord Complete Streets image 1

 

Downtown Concord Complete Streets

Owner:  City of Concord

Key Players:

Severino Trucking

McFarland-Johnson

Louis Karno & Company

 

The reconstruction of Concord’s North and South   Main Streets has transformed the character and appeal of downtown.   Sidewalks now 45% of street space, and, counter-intuitively, parking was reduced  from 31% to 16% of the roadway.  In addition, space for travel lanes was reduced from 46% 27% of the overall design, while space for bicycles was increased from 0 to 12%.  At times, pedestrian counts are more than double what they were before the re-build.  And there are virtually no empty store-fronts.  It’s a vibrant “outdoor room” in front of New Hampshire’s Capitol building.

Jury comments:

-  This was a transformative project for the City’s core, a catalyst to redefine downtown

-  The project has led to tremendous economic revitalization and a renewed sense of pride in how Concord looks and feels

-  The buried power lines are a great asset.

-  The great energy that went into the design and building of the new configuration is still being felt as people walk, shop and socialize in their own downtown.

 

 

Plan NH is an independent organization with a mission to “foster excellence in planning, design and development of New Hampshire’s built environment.”   Through workshops, newsletters and more, Plan NH raises awareness of the impact of the built environment and community design on the health and vibrancy of towns and neighborhoods.  The organization shares information about ideas and trends and techniques with planning, design and building professionals, as well as with Granite State communities themselves.  For more information about Plan NH and its programs, go to www.plannh.org.