Acknowledging the colorful Welcome to Prescott mural located in the alley just west of Montezuma Street’s popular Whiskey Row, Prescott City Council members have approved $61,250 to install archways at the Goodwin and Gurley street entries leading into the alley.
The purpose — to attract visitors to wander through the alley to view a recently completed large mural featuring a highly stylized spelling of Prescott. Each letter depicts a different visual image associated with the historic community, such as “P” for plaza, “R” for rodeo, “O” for outdoors and the like.
The mural was created by local artists Julian Hutchins and Dana Cohn. Visitors passing through the alley to view the mural must pass entryways into a diverse group of businesses and attractions located on the more than century-old Whiskey Row.
Enhancement of the alleyway was just one of many recommendations that came from a 2019 downtown revitalization series of discussions, Flip This Town, led by consultant Ron Drake and sponsored through the Prescott Chamber of Commerce.
The archway will be constructed by local company Work of Arc Fabrication LLC. It is anticipated the archways will be in place by the end of June, said Tyler Goodman, assistant to the city manager. It was emphasized the archways will provide clearance up to 16 feet for vehicles such as delivery and garbage.
The city and business community want to make the alley more user-friendly and appealing to pedestrians. Other enhancements under discussion include resurfacing the alleyway and cleaning up various stains and smirches that currently discolor the area. Also planned are more overhead lights and some neon lighting, especially near the city parking garage.
Funds to pay for the archways are from two city sources: $40,000 in bed tax funds generated by hotel taxes and short-term rentals, and $21,250 in city street funds.
Photo by Bob Shanks