This project was a collaborative effort among the City of Franklin Main Street Program, Acadiana Regional Development District, St. Mary Parish government and Young Memorial Vocational Technical School.
The receptacles were a Main Street project that was started by former Main Street Program Manager Marla Chirdon and the Main Street Program’s Design Committee. The Design Committee members who completed the project are Willie Edwards and Didi Battle. Edwards and Battle talked with the Main Street merchants and gained their cooperation for the project. Additionally, they helped to decide on a paint color and to strategically place the receptacles on Main Street.
Grayling Hadnott, Economic Development Director for ARDD said, “Acadiana Regional Development District secured a Gulf Oil Spill Economic Recovery Grant from the Economic Development Administration Division of the United States Department of Commerce to aid the area (Iberia, St. Mary, and Vermilion Parishes).”
Furthermore, ARDD and St. Mary Parish government worked together on a $10,000 grant proposal that would allow students attending Young Memorial to gain experience in welding.
Frank Fink, Economic Development director for St. Mary Parish stated that he “initiated and coordinated the grant through the ARDD, brought in Karl Young with classroom welder training, and facilitated payments to Young Memorial.”
Young Memorial’s students gained experience in aluminum welding as a result of this grant. According to Karl Young, campus administrator, “Young Memorial was basically the facilitator on the project from the initial meeting with ARDD, St. Mary Parish Economic Development, and Franklin to partnering with Hanagriff’s Machine Shop for the fabrication, to our welding students welding out the receptacles, to finally delivering the receptacles to Twin Brothers for painting then back to City Hall for installation.”
Everyone involved said they are pleased with the results of this collaboration, especially the Main Program’s Design Committee members and Mayor Raymond Harris.
Willie Edwards said, “The trash cans look nice, and they encourage people not to litter.”
Didi Battle stated, “The goal was to get the unattractive trash cans off of Main Street. We’re hoping to get them all off and use only the beautiful ones.”
“Anything that encourages people not to litter is a good thing. I’m hoping that this is just one of many projects that will be done to beautify and promote Franklin’s Main Street and Historic District,” said Mayor Harris.