LYNDON — More than 50 people gathered in the basement of the First Congregational Church on Wednesday evening.

Their mission? To revive Lyndonville.

The two-and-a-half-hour workshop marked the second phase of Revamp The Ville, a grant-funded effort to breathe new life into the village district.

Those in attendance took a wish list of downtown improvements and whittled it down to a dozen or so priorities such as the need for a bar, more diverse dining, traffic calming, and sidewalk expansion.

Ultimately, Revamp The Ville will publish a master plan for downtown redevelopment, with specific projects for implementation. It is viewed as an important step forward in the town’s continued economic progress.

Those involved in the workshop were excited by the possibilities.

“I was re-energized by this experience,” said Elly Barksdale, a member of the Lyndon Downtown Revitalization Committee.

The event marked the second phase of Revamp The Ville.

For months, town planner Nicole Gratton and a volunteer steering committee have conducted outreach efforts, gathered public input, and laid the foundation for RTV.

Consultants Dubois & King of Randolph used that information, along with a market study and data analysis, to identify Lyndonville’s strengths and weaknesses, determine needs, and suggest the next steps.

That information served as the foundation for Wednesday’s workshop.

Following a comprehensive presentation by Dubois & King, those in attendance broke out into groups. Each group focused on a facet of redevelopment. They talked about the problems, considered solutions, and proposed a few action items that they considered worthwhile and achievable.

Some ideas proved popular.

Multiple groups proposed improvements to nightlife and dining. Their wish list included a bar, upscale restaurants, and increased dining variety.

There was also widespread agreement that the village needed to upgrade and expand sidewalks, enhance pedestrian and cycling infrastructure, and address traffic flow concerns.

There were also calls to re-energize existing community events and create new ones, to establish a Parks and Recreation Department to centralize management and manpower, to create a community calendar to promote happenings in town, and to improve signage and village gateways.

In all, the breakout groups made approximately two dozen suggestions.

Dan Guest, a member of the Lyndon Planning Commission, was encouraged by the level of participation.

“I think it’s important in a small town to be involved, and it’s good that so many people turned out,” he said.

Dubois & King will return with a fine-tuned set of project proposals at a later date, with the goal of selecting a handful for implementation. There will be additional opportunities for community participation in the summer and fall.

In the meantime, Revamp The Ville will host a Taste of Lyndon event on Wednesday, July 13. Taste of Lyndon was established in response to strong demand for more social events in downtown. It will showcase local cuisine, feature pop up restaurants, and include demo versions of potential Revamp The Ville improvement projects.

Revamp The Ville is funded by a Vermont Better Connections grant and is a partnership of the Town of Lyndon and the Northeastern Vermont Development Association.

For more information on Revamp The Ville visit tinyurl.com/RevamptheVille.

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