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Paso Robles wants to create an artsy Railroad District — and leaders need your input

A rendering shows a proposed Railroad District along Railroad Street between 10th and 12th streets in Paso Robles. The area is envisioned as a kind of arts hub that could feature murals and galleries.
A rendering shows a proposed Railroad District along Railroad Street between 10th and 12th streets in Paso Robles. The area is envisioned as a kind of arts hub that could feature murals and galleries. City of Paso Robles

Paso Robles leaders are re-imagining an area just west of downtown as an arts district — and they want your input on their plans.

Officials began considering how to fix up Railroad Street between 12th and 10th streets a couple of years ago through a task force involving the Paso Robles Downtown Main Street Association.

The city allocated $10,000 in funding to hire a consultant to draw up renderings that envision a Railroad District with an artsy, industrial theme.

Warren Frace, the city’s Community Development director, said leaders want to expand the downtown area, but in a slightly different way.

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A rendering shows a proposed Railroad District along Railroad Street between 10th and 12th streets in Paso Robles. The area is envisioned as a kind of arts hub that could feature murals and galleries. Wallace Group City of Paso Robles

He sees the new district as a “funky arts” destination for public art and murals.

“We don’t want to try to re-create what’s going on around the park,” Frace said.

He said cheaper rents in the area might make it possible for different kinds of businesses, such as galleries, to thrive.

There area some vacant parcels and fenced-in yards that could be ripe for development, Frace said. Leaning into the area’s industrial vibe might prove to be a draw.

“The nice thing about this is, you can just do it in phases over time,” he said

The city wants community input on the new design. To take a brief survey, visit prcity.com/755/Railroad-Street-Design-Plan.

Lindsey Holden: 805-781-7939, @lindseymholden

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