Maryville is looking to add to and improve downtown with the building of a park in the heart of downtown.
Maryville Downtown Improvement Organization President Stephanie Campbell said the committee is planning its goals for 2019. One of the official plans for this year is the Pocket Park. The planning of the park has been in effect for the past year and a half. The park will be on the northwest corner of Third Street and South Main Street.
“There will be artwork components of the park along the wall of the building located on Third and Main Street, the Blue Willow building,” Campbell said.
MDIO is collaborating with the Maryville Public Art Committee to determine what design to incorporate on the Blue Willow wall for the park.
MDIO is accepting art submission designs that could potentially go on the wall.
MPAC President Mark Hendrix has an idea of what the mural will look like.
“It (the mural) will say ‘Maryville’ and the ‘y’ will be faded in the background with a heart,” Hendrix said. “The idea is you will stand in the middle where the ‘y’ is supposed to be and you would make the ‘y.’ That makes you part of Maryville.”
The MDIO and MPAC are going through a mural selection process to see the different ideas other people have to offer for the mural.
“We are looking for people from the community. We are looking for Northwest students and high schoolers – anyone who has a passion for art to come and make the design as well as execute the process,” Hendrix said. “If you want to leave your mark on the town of Maryville, this is a pretty cool way you could do that.”
Hendrix said once the park is constructed and put together, the mural will be the last element to complete it.
Another addition to the Pocket Park will be a historical fountain that was on the Square before. This fountain was moved near the Administration Building on Northwest’s campus but was taken down due to construction and is being held in storage.
Campbell said seating and yard games will also be added to the park.
“When you bring vibrancy to your downtown, you are creating the heart of your city,” Campbell said. “When it (downtown) improves, it becomes a destination spot, a meeting place, a vibrant community that ventures out to other areas of the community. Having a thriving and healthy downtown is critical for a community’s success.”
Maryville City Manager Greg McDanel said the budget for the Pocket Park has been finalized. The project budget for construction is $136,000. Both MDIO and MPAC are fundraising for the construction of the park.
“The first step for the MDIO group was to acquire the land,” McDanel said. “They worked for donations to acquire two lots to house the Pocket Park.”
Hendrix said the construction of the park should hopefully start over the summer. The MPAC should start on the mural late August or early September.