DDA-funded gateway signs greet Center Line visitors

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published January 26, 2018

 Center Line City Manager Dennis Champine said a total of four gateway signs were installed at entry points along 10 Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue in all directions. Additional signs will be installed along secondary roads.

Center Line City Manager Dennis Champine said a total of four gateway signs were installed at entry points along 10 Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue in all directions. Additional signs will be installed along secondary roads.

Photo provided by the city of Center Line

CENTER LINE — Visitors entering Center Line from any direction along 10 Mile Road or Van Dyke Avenue will be greeted by new signs proclaiming the city as “The heart of metro Detroit.”

City Manager Dennis Champine said the new gateway signage, purchased for $97,000 with business tax dollars captured through the Downtown Development Authority, was built with field stone and granite, and is illuminated by solar lights.  The message, he said, was conceived by a Center Line High School student in 2016.

“Since my arrival, I’ve been pushing hard with the DDA board to start using those dollars for that purpose. We’ve done a lot of great things,” Champine said. “One of them is the gateway signage.”

John Motyka is the owner of Elite Ink on Van Dyke and also serves as a Center Line DDA board member.

“I think whenever you look at moving a city forward, having a structure such as a DDA is very vital and important,” Motyka said. “The fact being with the city of Center Line, with the DDA being involved with the gateway signs, you can see how they were put in place at strategic points to enhance the image of the city.

“That to me is a direct correlation of what is happening overall. You’re going to see more and more improvements throughout the city, such as the gateway signs,” Motyka said. “There’s just so many good things in motion right now.”

As a business owner, Motyka said the message conveyed on the signs is indicative of where the city of Center Line is right now, both literally and figuratively.

“I think what’s fascinating is we’re at the center. We’re perfectly positioned in terms of density of consumers and accessibility,” Motyka said. “I think that’s something that’s very important.”

He envisions future growth in the city as municipal leaders work with businesses to bring commercial investments that add value for those who live in Center Line.

“I think more and more of this is going to happen in this city. That’s what I believe,” Motyka said. “We’re definitely more than just car lots. There’s a lot to be said about this city. I’m proud to have my business here. I really am. There’s really good people here, and I can say there’s a strong team that’s working on the goals to forward the city.”

Champine said the signs, built with a 100-year life span, were designed so that the messaging could be changed over time as desired.

He said supplementary signage bearing the message will be installed along secondary roads.