Have you been downtown lately? If so, you’ve surely noticed that it looks so much better. Congratulations to new Merced city manager Steve Carrigan and Merced police Chief Norm Andrade for making Main Street safer and more attractive.
The Downtown Neighborhood Association (DNA) is committed to working with the city to create a more desirable and vibrant central city core. We know we must find compassionate solutions to a growing homeless population, and will help to achieve them. But rampant panhandling , abandoned shopping carts, trash and loitering had become a blight undermining Merced’s efforts to revitalize our historic downtown neighborhoods and business district. We cannot adequately assist the homeless and others who need our help if we choke off the businesses that create the jobs and revenue enabling us to provide necessary services.
UC Merced’s planned expansion downtown presents a unique and exciting opportunity to reinvigorate and reshape our beautiful downtown. DNA is grateful for the leadership city manager Carrigan is providing in moving us toward our shared goat of safe, attractive and desirable downtown neighborhoods and a thriving downtown business environment. If you haven’t been downtown recently, take another look; you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Cindy R. Morse, President, Downtown Neighborhood Association, Merced