“It’s a good day for Tracy and a great place to be,” said Mayor Brent Ives, prior to cutting the ceremonial ribbon officially opening the Downtown Plaza at Sixth Street and Central Avenue.
The $3.8 million plaza project, which broke ground Aug. 1 and was paid for by the city’s now-defunct redevelopment agency, features several green spaces and an interactive water feature that shoots several streams of water into the air. LED light strands with the capability of cycling through different colors are strung across the plaza and will illuminate the area at night.
City officials hope to use the plaza as a central gathering point for residents, and have planned several community events on the grounds. That includes the opening event of the Downtown Block Party series Friday, May 4, at 6 p.m., a Cinco de Mayo celebration featuring mariachis and a Latin salsa band.
Cars are once again parking in front of the businesses that line Sixth Street east of Central Avenue, as the lot was finished and opened in late March. The businesses have the option of closing some of that parking space to create sidewalk dining areas.
Janet Deloushe, and her daughter Lindsey, were enjoying the water feature shortly after the ceremonies ended.
“I get hot, but the water is cold,” said the 6-year-old.
Deloushe said she liked having a common area in downtown and that she was already planning the pair’s next visit.
“It’s great, because now when we come downtown, it’s easy to just come over here and get some sun and cool off under the water,” she said. “It’s a great idea that they decided to build this.”
The following is a list of events for the Downtown Block Party series:
• May 11, 6 to 10 p.m.; Girl’s Night Out! Pink Party “It’s Derby Time;” $20 per ticket
• June 8, 6 to 9 p.m.; Downtown Block Party; Blues and Brews
• June 22, 6 to 9 p.m.; Downtown Block Party; Old Time Rock and Roll 50s & 60s Night, along with a Taste of Tracy
• July 13, 6:30 p.m.; Movie on the Downtown Plaza; “Hugo”
• July 13, 6:30 p.m.; Movie on the Downtown Plaza; “Smurfs”
• Aug. 3; 6 to 9 p.m.; Downtown Block Party; Boots and Buckles Country Night
• Aug. 10 6:30 p.m.; Movie on the Downtown Plaza; “Dolphin Tale”
• Aug. 24; 6 to 9 p.m.; Downtown Block Party; Classic Rock Night
• Oct. 26, 6 to 10 p.m.; Girl’s Night Out! Witches and Broomsticks, $20 per ticket