Editor's Note: An incomplete version of this story ran in some Sunday editions. It is reprinted below in its entirety. The Times regrets the error.
CROWN POINT | Officials want to make two entrances to the city more alluring to visitors and to potential new businesses.
Both 109th Avenue and U.S. 231, near where they connect with Interstate 65, are in store for beauty treatments.
"As we look to attract businesses, we look to the beautification of the gateways," Mayor David Uran said.
Development consulting firm The Arsh Group has been assigned to come up with design concepts for the treatments.
The 109th Avenue interchange opened in September 2010 to give the city its second access point, along with U.S. 231, to I-65. The interstate is a major north-south carrier of cross country traffic.
The proposed Illiana Expressway slated to run east-west, south of Crown Point, would send even more traffic in the city's direction, via a feeder ramp onto I-65, Uran said.
"We want these intersections to be ready," Uran said.
Entry points to a community are important because they create a sense of arrival, Arsh Group principal Taghi Arshami said.
"They identify a community and give it a sense of place," Arshami said. "They encourage visitation."
Design of the improvements is in very early stages, and rights of way on land near the intersections are being worked out. A formal presentation of the design is planned for later in the year.
City redevelopment dollars will be used to fund the work.
Secondary gateways at other entry points to the city, including on 93rd and 133rd avenues and on U.S. 231 at the city's western border, are part of a long-term plan.
Generally, Arshami said, a gateway treatment "gives definition to a place."
It also can serve to direct traffic to other points of interest.
"The way-find signage will help promote our business locations as well as our numerous historical districts," Uran said.
City Councilman Mark Schweitzer, R-at large and a member of the Redevelopment Commission, supports the effort.
"As a traveler, I do notice when a community has a gateway," Schweitzer said. "It makes a statement; it sends a message."