Main Street Plaza set to open in early June

Evan Laux , NEWS & OPINION EDITOR

At a recent city council meeting, Mayor Matt Miller announced that he anticipates the “Main Street Plaza” to be open by early June.

The city accepted a $196,000 grant at the meeting, which will be put towards the construction of the plaza. 

Simonson Construction has been working on the project since it was approved last year, and much of the exterior brick wall has been finished. 

The plaza sits directly beside Ohio Fire Pizza and across the street from Ashley’s Candy and Nut Shoppe.

“Main Street Plaza is coming right along,” Miller said. “I think it’s really piqued people’s interest to see the brick going up.”

Within the walls, the plaza will feature a green turf courtyard, an outdoor stage wired for lighting and sound covered by a pergola and life sized bronze statues of a lion, tiger and bear. 

The former plan to include a splash pad within the plaza has since been dropped.

Miller noted that a concert is already scheduled at the plaza for mid-June and other community events will likely be held at later dates.

“Anything new downtown is a plus,” Ohio Fire Pizza owner Brad Bryan said. “My folks were from Polk back in the 40s and they said that on a Saturday night you couldn’t get down the streets of Ashland. It’s nice to see downtown come back to life.”

Ohio Fire Pizza opened in October of last year, and Bryan anticipates that the plaza will bring in more foot traffic to the restaurant and other local businesses nearby.

“It’s great to see downtown slowly being revitalized and bolstered up,” Bryan said.

Ashley Kline of Ashley’s Candy and Nut Shoppe is also optimistic about the new plaza.

“It’ll be nice to look out the window and see more people walking up and down the street,” Kline said. “It’s been awhile since Main Street felt alive.”