(SALINA, Kan.) — From yard signs to cars and even marquees Salina’s bid to beautify its city is evident. The town is decked out before election day, the current hot issue; a possible makeover for the Smoky Hill River corridor.
"I really get a mixed bag of reaction when it comes to the project and that's pretty typical."
Salina’s city manager Jason Gage finds himself at the heart of the Smoky Hill River renewal project.
"What would happen, is we would create about a half mile of urban river-walk like San Antonio, or Oklahoma City.”
That’s just the start of the project aimed to combine big city chic and rural nature. The cost for the first phase alone would stretch anywhere from $25 to 30 million.
"They mention the San Antonio river-walk and they have over a million people! There is no comparison between Salina and San Antonio."
Mike Wilson says he’s concerned about trying to morph Salina into big city.
Some voters against the project simply do want to deal with a quarter cent sales tax increase needed to fund the project.
"I think when the economy is better healed that’s the time to do something like this" added Bob Bowser.
Other voters like the big picture of the renewal, but want to wait for the economy to rebound before undertaking the multi-million dollar project.
The city will hold its final informational meeting Thursday night at 6:30. Officials will be available to answer questions voters may have.