In an effort to increase tourism and visitor interaction with Broadway Avenue, the Community Revitalization Team (CRT) is revamping the empty Arrowhead corner lot.
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CRT hopes to have project completed by fall
by Lindy Steeves
The corner of West A Street and North Broadway Ave. has been empty since 1973 when the Arrowhead Hotel burned to the ground.
In June 2011, the owner of the property, Bill Allen, donated the lot to the Harney County Opportunity Team. The team then turned the lot over to the CRT, and the renovation planning began.
The finished project will include a large grassy area, benches, additional parking, restrooms and an amphitheater. The goal, for now, is to finish the grass and additional parking in time for the fair and Cycle Oregon.
The majority of the project will be funded by donations of money, supplies and labor from local businesses and individuals.
To begin the project, the city of Burns cleared off the top layer of gravel, rocks and brush. Ron and Toni Williams at TopLoc Asphalt Maintenance then donated weed killer and an employee to tackle the job of spraying the area. The CRT then purchased topsoil from ACW Rock & Ready-Mix, which Herb Vloedman and Dennis Bennett spread over the corner lot.
The next step for the CRT will be to trench the area for an underground sprinkler system. The head of CRT, Randy Fulton, is hopeful the trenching will be completed quickly. The CRT will then use money donated by Bill Wilbur to purchase grass sod. The sod will be laid down within the upcoming weeks.
“What I’m looking for is a reason for tourists to stop on main street…if we can give them a nice place to stop, they may look around and realize there’s five or six places to eat right near there. Why not walk down to Bella Java or up to Broadway Deli?” Fulton said.
Fulton also said that the addition of a nearby kiosk would help visitors see the available places to visit.
“If people are coming through here, I want them to stop for more than just gas and some fast food,” he said. “We want them to stop here on main street.”
The new Arrowhead Plaza, coupled with the Harney County Community Center, the proposed Native American Cultural Center and other recent additions to Burns could present an opportunity for travelers to support the local economy.