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Franklin officials to further ‘mull’ gazebo redesign

The folks in Franklin are not yet sure what direction they may go with the revamping of the town’s gazebo on Main Street. Representatives of Venture Local Franklin presented the town board of aldermen with alternative plans for the gazebo during its April 7 meeting, but the board did not take up the issue for discussion. 


“Basically, they want to process what they’ve gotten and mull it over and decide what to do later on down the road,” explained Franklin Town Manager Warren Cabe.

Earlier this year, the aldermen considered gazebo plans put before them by the Main Street Association — a non-profit funded with public money and tasked with promoting the downtown area — but scuttled the redesign after some downtown merchants complained that they had not been given an opportunity to contribute concepts to the project. Venture Local, in a partnership with the Macon County League of Women Voters, subsequently hosted a community forum in an effort to get additional input on the gazebo issue. 

Matt Bateman, an organizer behind the Venture Local effort, laid out the group’s goals for the aldermen.

“We want to bring the community together, share ideas and see what comes of it,” he told them.

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Another Venture principal, Angela Moore, relayed gazebo-related information gleaned from the recent forum. She described specific plans from community members as well as suggestions about improving sound and aesthetic issues with the gazebo redesign. She also stressed that there was overwhelming support for ensuring the redesign reflected a local flavor, incorporating factors such as history and environment.

“A lot of feedback that I hope will be of assistance for you,” Moore told the aldermen. 

The aldermen did not have any questions following the Venture Local presentation. Cabe said he thought the board would take up the gazebo issue again at a later date. 

“I’m sure it’ll be on their minds during the May meeting,” Cabe said.

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