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11Sep

Sebring CRA Receives National Rural Design Grant

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SEBRING, Fla (September 11, 2019) - The Sebring Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) Agency is thrilled to announce that we have been selected as one of 23 communities chosen to receive a Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design Peer-Learning Workshop.

In its ongoing support of rural communities, the National Endowment for the Arts announces the 2019 communities taking part in its national initiative, the Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design (CIRD). New this year, the Arts Endowment, in partnership with the Housing Assistance Council and buildingcommunityWORKSHOP, is expanding CIRD’s offerings to include a peer-learning component for rural leaders from 23 communities. These leaders will receive training in rural design and creative placemaking as well as support in navigating funding opportunities to make their places better to live, work, and play.

“With more than 80 communities vying for this prestigious national grant, the Downtown Sebring CRA is honored to have been selected as a recipient for the Peer Learning Cohort. This grant will afford the CRA the opportunity to receive training in rural design and creative placemaking to aid in our redevelopment efforts for Downtown Sebring. Specifically, the CRA will utilize the learning cohort to plan for the redevelopment of the underutilized Downtown Sebring waterfront area, and create a focal lakeside amenity for the county. This project is back in the forefront as a key redevelopment effort for the CRA with the intention of creating a quality of place offering to augment downtown development,” Stated by CRA Executive Director, Kristie Vazquez.

George E. Sebring created the city’s center to serve as the focal point in a unique circular pattern, which is now the majority of the historic CRA District. Lake Jackson is the centerpiece of Sebring, the waterfront bookend of the Sebring Circle, and the focus of this waterfront redevelopment project. Sebring’s nearly rear-round tropical climate is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream, but not everyone has public access to the many lakes in a recreational capacity. However, while picturesque, the community lacks a variety of commercially standard recreational amenities. The goal of the CRA is to utilize this opportunity to facilitate the brainstorming and design of this community-centric project through the structure and technical expertise of the program.

The mission of the CRA is to bring about the economic revitalization of an established target area. To create a re-investment environment that attracts private investors into the area. To promote improvements within the redevelopment area through renovation and restoration of buildings, as well as to encourage new construction. To acquire the funding necessary to make the infrastructure improvements necessary to attract investment dollars and improve the assessed taxable value of district properties and to assist the Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Merchants in their efforts to market the downtown businesses. For more information, visit www.DowntownSebring.org

For more information on this program announcement, visit arts.gov/news or rural-design.org 

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