First Settlement Neighborhood

First Settlement NH Chair Bert Stitt's message from the 2015 CNI Annual Report:

It was a pleasure to see First Settlement being recognized in last summer's Cap Times article "Capital Neighborhood: First Settlement has become a Downtown Success Story" (7/16/2014). Our neighborhood's transformation has been a result of decades of commitment and vision of urban pioneers and forward-thinking entrepreneurs. To those who have contributed to our neighborhood's transformation, I extend a heartfelt thank you on behalf of those of us who benefit daily from your labors. And to all neighbors, young professionals and retirees alike, I issue a challenge - Get involved! Great places like our neighborhood do not happen by accident. They're made and sustained by the efforts of people like you.

Highlights from the past year:

  • Crowley Station (CS), at 201 S. Hancock St., continues as a place for exhibitions and performances. Musicians will be performing there for Make Music Madison from 4 - 9 PM on Sunday, June 21st. Last September, the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium organized the very successful "Strollin' First Settlement" event where ideal weather made CS a perfect venue for big band performances. Neighbors are grateful to Alders Verveer and Rummel as well as the Madison Water Utility for their support and cooperation with transforming CS into a neighborhood asset.
  • Get involved - Want to host a poetry slam or exhibit art at this outdoor public space? Get in touch if you have an idea, big or small, for using Crowley Station. Madison's newest community garden, the Crowley Station Community Garden (CSCG), is in its second growing season on the lower deck of Crowley Station. The CSCG became a reality early last summer after an extraordinary effort by a dedicated group of downtown residents who constructed planting beds and moved tons of soil (I didn't say 'dirt' Danni!). Gardeners are hoping the city will soon install the bike parking stalls that were promised for last year. Get involved at crowleystationgarden.org.
  • The neighborhood was presented with an exciting project, called The King, which proposes to replace a tiny surface parking lot at the corner of King and S. Webster Sts. with an attractive, seven-story, flatiron building. Plans call for a 36 room boutique hotel, a two-story bar-restaurant, a lower-level entertainment space, and a roof-top cafe with a retractable roof. Neighbors look forward to working with the development team on challenges the project will be facing with zoning. Get involved - join a neighborhood steering committee.
  • Plans for a six-story apartment building at 330 E. Wilson St. were approved. The neighborhood steering committee was unsuccessful at influencing the building's setback or massing to keep open the view down S. Hancock St., but it was able to influence the palette of materials to improve the building's compatibility with the surrounding historic residential and commercial buildings. Neighbors are anticipating construction to begin sometime this summer. Thank you to those neighbors who participated on the steering committee.
  • The saga of Judge Doyle Square continues to unfold as new proposals for this site are being analyzed and reviewed by the city with recommendations expected late July and Council action following in August. The current timeline sets selection of the development team by next January with construction to commence sometime in 2016.

Get involved - Do you have ideas for building a stronger First Settlement neighborhood? Our regular neighborhood meetings are on the second Tuesday of odd months. Dates for the remainder of 2015 are: 7/14, 9/8 and 11/10. Meeting dates and locations are posted on our listserv (subscribe by sending an email to firstsettlementneighborhood-subscribe@yahoogroups.com).

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