Officials from the South Street Headhouse District and the city gathered at 4th and Bainbridge Monday evening to unveil a host of completed streetscape improvements along Fabric Row in Queen Village.
The changes include new white LED street lamps along both sides of 4th Street from Lombard to Christian, decorative crosswalks at the intersections of 4th and Bainbridge and 4th and South, and 13 new street trees.
The work was funded with a $1.3 million grant from the city—one of the last projects to receive funding from the final tranche of Neighborhood Transformation Initiative money that Councilman Squilla was required to allocate before January 2016.
Previously, Fabric Row had been lit from above by about a dozen highway-style cobrahead lights with incandescent bulbs, which basked the corridor in a dingy yellow glow. The cobraheads were removed, and replaced with 38 traditional lampposts and a dozen overhead lamps fitted with white LEDs. The corridor does seem much brighter now at night, and so far there have reportedly been a few complaints from near neighbors that the lights are too bright.
Pedestrian-scale lighting was one of the recommendations in the 2013 Community Design Collaborative-facilitated plan for Fabric Row corridor improvements, aimed at improving the pedestrian experience and unifying the corridor with planters, street seating, banners, curb bumpouts, and fabric pattern crosswalks.
Mike Harris, executive director of South Street Headhouse District, said the special services district is in the process of replacing all of the street lamps along South Street with white LEDs within its jurisdiction from Front to 11th Street, and the Streets Department will fund LED bulbs on the remaining three blocks between 11th and Broad for a unified appearance.
Harris says planters and street furniture will be SSHD's next priority for placemaking along Fabric Row.
Click through the slideshow for images of the new street lamps and crosswalks.