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Municipal Updates & News

Posted on: December 21, 2020

More Public Art Planned for Charlie Watson Lane


Charlie Watson Lane in downtown Sanford is slated for $20,000 in public art, lighting, and security enhancements, thanks to grants from local community nonprofits and the City of Sanford Public Arts Fund.

Charlie Watson Lane is the official name of the alley that connects South Steele Street to the public parking lot on Carthage Street. It was named after Charlie Watson, a local man who delivered The Sanford Herald to downtown businesses and visitors for decades. 

“Charlie Watson Lane already attracts people to downtown Sanford,” says Liz Whitmore, the city’s Historic Preservation Planner and liaison to the City of Sanford Appearance Commission.  “We want to continue building it as a safe, visually interesting space that welcomes visitors and makes it convenient for them to patronize our restaurants and shops.”  

The alley is already home to the Before I Die wall, the interactive Wings butterfly mural, and the three-dimensional Caterpillar art installation. The following enhancements will follow:

  • Sculptor Jason Moore has been chosen to add a decorative arch on the South Steele Street entrance to Charlie Watson Lane.
  • Local artist Chris Dalton will tile the arch’s pillars in a mosaic pattern.
  • Security cameras will be added.
  • Decorative lighting, which has already been installed.

To fund the improvements, the Visit Sanford Tourist Development Agency granted $7,000 and Downtown Sanford, Inc. granted $5,000 to the City of Sanford Appearance Commission. The City of Sanford’s Public Arts Fund has contributed $5,500.

The remaining cost will be covered by ongoing fundraising efforts. Donations from the public are welcome. Get more information on our website here.

For more information about the Public Arts Program or the enhancements to Charlie Watson Lane, contact Liz Whitmore at 919-718-4657 ext 5393.

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