NAPA -- With many projects completed, under way or in the pipeline in downtown Napa, the next wave of development will have a "significant impact" on the city.
"Napa is continuing to evolve with a lot more to offer for visitors and residents alike," said Jennifer LaLiberte, economic development manager with the city of Napa. "Positive stimulus activities like these are important in terms of place-making, job creation and providing new shopping, dining and entertainment options for the community."
She said this new investment influx builds upon public and private investments made over the past decade in terms of generating viable economic activity.
Napa businesses and visitors will benefit from a plan to convert First and Second streets from a one-way couplet to two-way thoroughfares as part of the Downtown Napa Specific Plan implementation. The conversion of Third and Fourth streets to two-way traffic will follow.
The new Soscol Gateway Transit Center, completed in early 2013 at a cost of $4.85 million, acts as a bridge between Napa and the greater Bay Area and is a multimodal transportation hub for trains, buses and cars.
Located at 625 Burnell St. and designed by Kappe + Du Architects, this center is also the new home of the Napa County Transportation Planning Agency (NCTPA).
Other public works activities designed to improve Downtown Napa's quality of life include sidewalk improvements in the St. John's neighborhood, and a new boat dock at the end of Fourth St.
The plan also includes construction of the China Point Overlook Park at the southwest corner of Soscol Avenue and First Street -- to honor the city's Chinese residents and featuring a Moon Gate -- and a 9/11 Memorial Garden at Main Street on Napa Creek. Most of these projects will be completed in 2013.
The city now boasts nine entertainment venues downtown and at the Oxbow Public Market, with several restaurants featuring weekday and/or weekend musical groups.
The Napa ARTwalk upcoming exhibition, titled "Metamorphosis," will feature 15 sculptures in the downtown area. It will be on public display from June 13, 2013 through May 2015.
Sponsored by the Arts Council Napa Valley and the city of Napa, the exhibit is part of the third annual Napa ARTwalk Public Sculpture Tour.
Sculptures can be found between Napa City Hall to the Oxbow Public Market on First Street, and from the Napa Creek to the Napa Mill on Main Street.