Uptown Selma Partnership

By: Scott Bolejack

The Selma Town Council has a new partner in its bid to breathe renewed life into uptown.

The council formally recognized the Uptown Selma Business Partnership, whose membership includes former town manager Bruce Radford.

“It’s no surprise to anybody that looks around — and I’ve watched it for a number of years — the central business district has fallen into somewhat disrepair,” he said.

Radford said antiques alone could no longer sustain downtown. “That demographic has changed,” he said. “And I think the folks that are here tonight that are in the antique business will tell you that is has changed somewhat.”

“More work is required to be done now,” he said.

Radford was manager when Selma turned uptown into a destination for antique shoppers. That effort, he recalled on Tuesday, included a spaghetti supper that brought together uptown building owners, merchants and others with an interest in the central business district.

Radford suggested a similar dinner this fall as Selma tries to reinvent uptown again. “No one knows what the solutions are for … bringing central business back to its former glory,” he said.

At the dinner, Redford said, he would ask attendees to voice their ideas for renewing uptown. He would then put all of those ideas on paper and ask people to rank them, with the goal of identifying the top three.

“As a result of that, we’d find out the three things that the group had the most interest in or what they thought would be the most successful,” Radford said.

He told Selma leaders and those in audience to be on the lookout for details about the dinner.