On August 19, 2020, the City Council voted unanimously to establish the West Lebanon Revitalization Advisory Committee for the purpose of working with the City’s Administration to develop plans for the revitalization and redevelopment of the Central Business District area of West Lebanon. The Advisory Committee was charged with serving in an advisory capacity to the City Manager and Planning Department and with preparing priorities and recommendations prior to a sunset date of December 31, 2021.
Members of the committee were appointed during the Fall of 2020 and the Advisory Committee held its first meeting on December 15, 2020. The Committee subsequently met more than 20 times over the course of 12 months as it worked to envision and advocate for future improvements in downtown West Lebanon in order to rebuild and restore the vibrant village “where residents and visitors work, meet, shop, and share in a good quality of life and a firm sense of community and belonging.” (City of Lebanon Master Plan, 2012; Chapter 4) The Committee worked on plans and concepts for West Lebanon Village based on the 2020 West Lebanon Village Visioning Charrette report, the 2012 Master Plan, and other prior plans and studies. In addition to focusing on Westboro Yard, Streetscape improvements, Bridge Park, and other issues, the Advisory Committee also planned and executed a “Block Party” event at Kilton Library on October 23, 2021 to highlight the demolition work occurring at Westboro Yard and to celebrate the first steps toward restoring West Lebanon into a vibrant village.
In accordance with its charge, the Advisory Committee presented a summary list of Priorities & Recommendations to the City Council on January 19, 2022. The Committee also created a final report entitled: Action Plan for West Leb, which provides a more holistic look at what the Committee is advocating for in West Lebanon.
Ideas and Concepts
During the course of its term, the Advisory Committee reviewed and commented on several specific concepts and ideas for West Lebanon that emerged from the Visioning Charrette report, including:
- Potential Streetscape Improvements for Main Street to enhance the appearance and functionality of West Lebanon Village (see Conceptual Corridor Plan and Photo Simulations);
- A potential publicly-accessible River Trail along the Connecticut River connecting Bridge Street to South Main Street (see Conceptual Path Alignment Plan and Rail Bridge Section details);
- Conceptual ideas for public improvements to the Westboro Yard property (upon receipt of lease control of the property from the NH Department of Transportation)
WestLebFuture Block Party
On Saturday, October 23rd, the Advisory Committee hosted a Neighborhood Block Party at the Kilton Library to share news and ideas with the community about progress toward revitalizing West Lebanon Village. The Committee created marketing graphics and flyers for the event and invited residents and City officials to attend the Block Party to celebrate “Old West Leb”, to learn more about opportunities that are taking shape, and to join in the community’s efforts to revitalize downtown West Lebanon.