New installation looking to light up Charlottetown's Kent Street

·2 min read
Overhead cables would run along the section of the Kent Street that's between Great George and Prince streets in the city's downtown. (Discover Charlottetown - image credit)
Overhead cables would run along the section of the Kent Street that's between Great George and Prince streets in the city's downtown. (Discover Charlottetown - image credit)

Discover Charlottetown is hoping a new display along Kent Street will help make the street a new destination for both locals and visitors.

The marketing firm is planning to install overhead cables which will run along the section of the street that's between Great George and Prince streets in the city's downtown.

Lightning and other objects would hang from the cables, with the decor changing every season.

"We'd love to have something colourful," Heidi Zinn, executive director of Discover Charlottetown, said. "It could be a Christmas wreath or bells at Christmas time. So really, it could depend. We'd love to be able to keep adding to the collection, so there's always a bit of an element of surprise when new seasons roll around."

The firm is aiming to get the cables installed this fall and get the first displays up before the Christmas holiday.

'I think it's beautiful'

Travis Kingdon/CBC
Travis Kingdon/CBC

The City of Charlottetown has agreed to cover the cost of changing the decorations, which is estimated to cost between $10,000 and $40,000 per year.

"If there's any way that we can improve the look of our streetscape, I think it's beautiful," Ward 1 Councillor Alanna Jankov said. "I think it's beneficial to people coming and visiting our city, as well as people that are already presently residents of the downtown area."

The city will also pick up costs of the yearly inspection of the cable connections, which are estimated to be about $2,500.

Zinn says the firm chose Kent Street for the proposal because of the new restaurants and entertainment businesses popping up in the area.

'It's pretty remarkable how far it's come'

Steve Bruce/CBC
Steve Bruce/CBC

Brett Hogan, co-owner of the local bar, Hopyard, says he "loves the direction" the street is heading.

"It's getting busier at night and people are coming to go to the shows and they're having dinner either before or drinks afterwards," he said. "We've been here a little over five years now and it's pretty remarkable how far it's come in five years."

Zinn says that the installation is geared toward capturing the attention of a modern, tech-savvy public.

"Our mandate is to kind of, you know, bring people to Charlottetown and find unique ways to market a city, and this is certainly not traditional," she said.

"This is not something that would come to top of mind when you think about marketing. But with the way social media is and user-generated content, what better way to market a city than create a space for people to take pictures of, that they'll take pictures of again and again and again and and have them all over social media?"

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