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Downtown district will seek bids for community pavilion

By LAUREN LANGLOIS staffwriter@hammondstar.com

Hammond Downtown Development District will soon seek bids to construct the community pavilion behind the district's office.

The Hammond Historic District has approved the design of the $798,000 project's design, and District Director Chelsea Tallo said all other required approvals have been received to move forward.

She said the project should go out for bids in about a month. The district board discussed the project briefly at its meeting Wednesday, including brainstorming what to call the structure.

The pavilion will host the farmers market and other community events once completed. It will be about 5,400 square feet and will be able to hold 48 booths.

It will be located between LaCarreta restaurant and the district's office on the northeast corner of Thomas Street and Northwest Railroad Avenue. The district is borrowing $300,000 to help cover the cost of the project.

The project will include construction and landscaping, as well as relocating the Stewart Monument and a fountain's plaque on the property. The monument will remain in the main plaza and be moved to a spot between the pavilion and the DDD office.

Finding a location for the pavilion had been a challenge, but the district finally settled on the land behind the office that was donated to the city by the Cate family. The property has requirements attached to it, including that it have a government building, have a monument and that it be used as a public space.

Also Wednesday, the board heard the farmers market is working with a company to create an app so customers can order from vendors through their smart phones for pickup.