PLAINS TOWNSHIP -- The business district in Plains Township is getting a facelift thanks to a state grant worth nearly $250,000.
It may not look like much now, but nearby business owner John Corcoran said a patch of grass on South Main Street in Plains Township holds a lot of promise.
"This is the gateway to Plains Township. The gateway to many towns, actually--Wilkes-Barre, Pittston, Old Forge, all the way up the line," Corcoran, owner of Corcoran Funeral Home, said.
Business owners said the new look is so desperately needed because it's traveled by so many people. The beautification could draw in more business and give a more welcoming feel for visitors.
"It's the center point of our town. You see how busy it is here, and hopefully we can draw on that," Plains Township Commissioner Robert Sax said.
The planned improvements include a dozen new trees and a wall welcoming people to the township.
"If they're going to have a casino here we might as well use it for good. I get a lot of people saying, 'Where's all the money going?' But if they see some progress that would be great," Sue Bruno, owner of the nearby business Sue Bruno's Styling Boutique said.
Residents call the open area where the wall will be constructed The Brick.
Fifty years ago, it was an area where people in Plains Township would get together after work or school and just talk about town issues. There were benches and a brick walkway where people could just sit and watch the world go by. However, over the years it started to fall apart and deteriorate. Now, through this project, they're hoping to bring The Brick back.
"Anything you wanted to know, you learned at The Brick and now it's been recreated with this new project and the wall will be out of brick showing exactly what it was," Corcoran said.
Even though residents might have their own ideas about what to do with the casino money, council members said it had to be spent on a streetscape project.
"I know residents might be driving around and they see potholes. We have the hot patch on its way and those funds come from other areas. But these funds had to be used as a beautification project," Plains Township Commissioner Peter Biscontini said.
The project will begin in May and finish later this summer. It is expected to come under budget.