Cultural Heritage District Coming to Panama City


PANAMA CITY The Panama City CRA is doing more toward it's goal of making the downtown area a tourist destination.

A newest CRA Downtown North project could help advance that agenda.

If approved, it will mean big changes for the Glenwood Communty.

The Downtown North CRA Manager Toni Shamplain has been working on her newest project for 6 months.

Downtown North CRA Manager Toni Shamplain says, "We are wanting to empower, revitalize, redevelop this community."

It involves a new cultural heritage center on a little less than a square mile of land on Martin Luther King JR Boulevard between 7th Street to 17th Street.

It will be the center of an area Shamplain hopes will become a tourist district.

Right now, the project is in the planning phases.

The CRA has held two public forums on the conceptual designs for the buildings.

The third and last forum will take place later this month.

Shamplain says, "The locals have to wrap their arms around it because they are the history. I mean the greatest asset we have are the people. So they would have to love it. Once they show their love, and their willing to nurture the whole concept, then the tourists will love it."

St. Andrews CRA Manager Rob Rosner says, "St. Andrews has done something like that for the past dozen years where we've focused on historic and and cultural as opposed to cultural and heritage and St. Andrews has seen a lot of benefit out of it in the past ten or twelve years."

Project organizers still need city approval before putting out bids for the construction, but organizers are optimistic.

Rosner says, "Downtown North is in the middle of really kicking it up to the next notch. They have a lot of great heritage here and they're doing a fantastic job."

That third public forum will be held January 16th from 5 to 7pm at the AD Harris Learning Village on E 11th Street.


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