Local artists, local businesses working to dress up vacant building windows

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - With the kickoff of the Bagg's Square Harvest Fest Friday evening, came also the start of a new and exciting development in downtown Utica called Project U.

"It's happening in a lot of towns around the country and it has proven to be very successful in bringing more people downtown, it's been the impotence for starting something new for a downtown area, so we decided to try it out," says Regina Bonacci, the president of the Downtown Utica Development Association

The goal is to create opportunities for local artists to display their works in empty downtown store front windows. Bonacci continued, "The art project in windows is a concept that we came up with a few months ago, wanting to look at ways that we could draw people to come downtown and really get out of their cars and walk around."

Placing local works of art in downtown widows is just one piece of a multifaceted puzzle. The plan is to keep the current installations on display until mid November, and then start filling the windows with Christmas themed art.

This project is also supported by local manufacturers. Meyda-Tiffany is going to be installing lighting and Harden Furniture is bringing in furniture to enhance the look of the windows with the hope of generating interest in vacant buildings .

Bonacci also says, "It's giving people the ability to see something different, the young people in our community are not familiar with downtown, there hasn't been a lot of reason for them to come downtown for things that they would enjoy. This is an opportunity for them to make their mark here."

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