South Avenue Project with Better Block

When Covid hit, a number of restaurants severely suffered, especially those in downtown Springfield--a popular area for walking, congregating, and lounging in the community. At the time, outdoor seating wasn’t an option, and Better Block noticed this issue. As a solution, they created temporary outdoor spaces, turning sidewalks into welcoming spots for coffee dates, lunch breaks, and dinner. The restaurants and their patrons loved this new option, and Better Block has since been working with the city to instill these positive changes in other areas of downtown Springfield.


October 2021

Project Details

In the fall of 2021, Better Block was able to transform a block of South Avenue

By bringing in trees, additional outdoor seating, street art, and temporarily transforming the regular road into a one-way street, pedestrians were able to enjoy the block of South Avenue more freely. With this change, pedestrians were able to enjoy the space more freely. The city conducted a survey to see how business owners felt about the change and determine what pedestrians liked about it most. They also studied the foot traffic of the area before, during, and after the ten day trial. Soon, the city will determine if similar projects can become a permanent feature in additional downtown locations, making the areas much more walkable and pedestrian friendly. We were excited to help fund this project because we saw it as a great opportunity for the community to come together. The downtown area is evolving into a community-driven spot in town and we wanted to make it a little easier to be able to enjoy each other’s company outside.

Image of South Avenue with workers setting up the street for the South Avenue Project.
Image of a bean bag toss game on South Avenue.
Image of a sculpture of a dolphin on a bike, trees, and a temporary cross-street walkway on South Avenue.
Image of a performer playing guitar at night in the middle of South Avenue.
Image of a chalk board with "Love the trees!" messaging on South Avenue.

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