Workshops Wednesday Plan ‘Better Block’ Downtown

Despite a cold night, a “Community Walk and Talk Night” March 2 brought out a crowd. (Courtesy photograph.)

Those planning to build a temporary “Better Block” in downtown Haverhill next month want public wifi, later hours, more shopping, food trucks and more.

Ideas came forward during an initial planning meeting early last month. Promoters have a chance to expand on the concepts during workshops Wednesday afternoon and night.

“Come tell us what you want to build for the Haverhill Better Block on May 6. We’ll present the concept plan conceived from various ideas that we’ve tested at many Better Block’s around the country, and the ideas we received from the walk and talk on March 2,” reads a statement from Noah Koretz, Haverhill’s Transformative Development Initiative fellow.

The “Streets Team” is the first up at 1 p.m., Wednesday, at Pentucket Bank community room, 35 Merrimack St. That workshop focuses on improving transportation encouraging business.

At 2 p.m., “Public Spaces” looks at methods of bringing more people downtown and encouraging them to “stop, relax and linger.”

“Beautification,” discussing placing potted plantings, art and other creative objects, is discussed during the 3 p.m. workshop.

Ideas for “Pop Up” shops—places where entrepreneurs may test product and service ideas—is the subject of a workshop at 4 p.m.

Beginning at 6 p.m., a general session lays out plans for the temporary Better Block to be constructed Saturday, May 6, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., along Merrimack Street, between How and Main Streets.

Although the transformation of a block of downtown is temporary, the idea is to encourage city officials and decision-makers to “change policy and fast-track infrastructure improvements.”

More information and a volunteer signup page appears online at

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