Visioning Committee UPDATE
Members of the Dunlap Visioning Committee, in partnership with the City of Dunlap, DCDC, and the Dunlap Grants Committee, have made significant strides towards completing proposed community visioning projects.
The Community Visioning Project was an opportunity for community members to take part in focus groups and discuss potential improvement projects. Community members worked closely with technical experts from Trees Forever, a sector landscape architect, and the Iowa State University Department of Landscape Architecture to create an enhancement plan for community spaces, identified as areas of need and interest.
In the Spring of 2022, wayfinding signs were designed by DCDC and installed by the City of Dunlap. These signs reflect the community’s new branding.
The Visioning Committee seeks to enhance the town’s main points of entry with new signs as well. Dunlap’s current community sign, located along the Dunlap Golf Course, is a marquee-style sign, initially installed by DCDC in the early 1990s. This sign has served the Dunlap community for thirty years, but as of recently, has been showing significant damage from the years and the elements.
With funding from the City of Dunlap, the Iowa West Foundation, as well as several private donors, the sign will be upgraded in the Spring of 2024 to a monument-style cabinet sign with a 6’ x 9’8” active LED screen area. The cabinet will be lighted internally so that both the message and the branding will be visible at all hours of the day.
Representatives of the City of Dunlap are working to ensure an adequate power source to the new sign. The Visioning Committee has ordered the sign and plans to work with volunteers to enhance the landscaping around the sign with greenery once it is installed. DCDC will continue to manage the sign content remotely to promote Dunlap’s various community events.
Additional Entry Signs
Through the visioning process, additional welcome signs were proposed, including a large, back-lit welcome sign to be mounted on Cogdill’s grain bin and entryway signage that is a blend of traditional agrarian materials, and a clean contemporary design. These additional signs remain on the committee’s agenda to be considered in the next phase of grant-writing and fundraising efforts.
In the summer of 2024, the City of Dunlap, in partnership with the DOT will be repaving Dunlap’s main street from the Hwy 30 intersection east. Sidewalks, curbs, and gutters will be replaced at this time. It’s an opportune time to enhance the look of Dunlap’s main street with modern furnishings. The Visioning Committee selected a modern style with a classic black finish to complement other proposed updates.
With funding support from the City of Dunlap, the Iowa West Foundation, Petersen Manufacturing, Sullivan Supply, and various private donors, benches, trash receptacles and planters will be updated in the main street business district. The Committee continues to seek sponsors for the new amenities.
In a previous streetscape project, the city selected a traditional acorn-style streetlight for the west end of Iowa Avenue. The Visioning Committee, in partnership with the City of Dunlap, intends to extend this lighting through the remainder of Iowa Avenue. The existing streetlights, on taller posts, must remain per DOT regulations. They will be updated to be black to better match the proposed newer lights.
These streetlights will add a higher level of safety for pedestrians on Iowa Avenue. They will be enhanced with seasonal, vinyl banners and hanging flower planters.
The Visioning Committee plans to transform the gravel lot between the DCDC building and Bonsall TV & Appliance, into a stunning gathering space with picnic tables, benches, flowers, and a kid-friendly activity fixture. Users can sit at the benches and tables to enjoy a quieter, off-street social setting. String lights overhead will encourage evening use and add to the intimate quality of the space.
Thanks to funding from the Iowa West Foundation, the Harrison County Endowment, the City of Dunlap and many private donors, the pocket park will be installed in the summer of 2024. The Committee is working to obtain quotes and finalize the layout.
Participants from the visioning process expressed a significant demand for a developed network of trails. A proposed trail layout was created using survey information about frequent bicycle and pedestrian routes taken through town, community input, and focus group feedback highlighting key destinations for people walking in Dunlap.
It is the desire of the visioning committee that the Sports Complex and Pleasant View Park will become established trail heads with designated parking. The trails extend from these base points to connect to significant locations including the Boyer Valley Schools, the golf course, and the major businesses on Iowa Avenue. The proposed trail also creates a walking loop around the perimeter of town, measuring 4.5 miles in total distance.
In addition to creating a trail map, the design team also explored various options for graphics and way-finding signage for the trail system. The image below shows a simple logo design with the “Ride the Dun-Loop” slogan, which would be adaptable to a variety of signage types and scales.
The Dunlap Visioning Committee would like to thank all the community members who invested time in the research and planning of these projects throughout the last year. They would also like to thank the City Council of Dunlap and DCDC for supporting the projects. Successful partnerships between volunteer groups allow our community to flourish by ensuring that our limited resources are maximized.