The German Village Commission has given conditional approval for the final design of newspaper-box corrals along South Third Street.
Commission members, who agreed to the measure Feb. 5, expressed concern owners of the periodicals boxes would simply move them to avoid being shielded from the roadway.
Tim Bibler, chairman of the Streetscape Committee, which was charged with coming up with the design, said he didn't see that as a problem.
He said members of the committee have been trying to reach vendors to see if they're agreeable with the plan.
"If that becomes an obstacle, I don't see us moving forward getting this built," Bibler said. "What would be the point?"
The plan is to install one corral in front of the Golden Hobby Shop, 630 S. Third St.
The German Village Society recently was awarded a $10,000 grant toward the purchase of the corrals.
Bibler, whose committee reports to the Society, said the intent is install one before trying to raise money to pay for the other three corrals.
The streetscape committee must return to the commission for approval before the corral is installed.
The 4-foot, 3-inch-tall design features four perforated metal panels that are 4 feet long each with a sandstone-colored panel at the top. Meanwhile, side panels on each end -- facing north and south -- are 3 feet across and also feature the perforated black metal at the bottom and a custom historic panel at the top with information promoting destinations in the village.
"We tried to choose something that wasn't bulky but proportionate to the area," Bibler said.
The purpose of the corrals, which will be attached to the sidewalk, is to provide an attractive visual barrier between the street and newspaper boxes, located in four clusters along South Third between East Livingston and Reinhard avenues.
The next step is to bid out the project.
There is no specific timeline in putting the corral in place but it will be done as quickly as possible, Bibler said.
"Our objective is to continue to move this forward," he said.
The committee, which has been working on the issue since August, had considered about a half-dozen designs, including one that had plants helping create a trellis design.
That one was dismissed, however, because of maintenance concerns, Bibler said.
The committee has found many of the newspaper boxes are faded and in general states of disrepair, while others aren't being used at all.
And the number of number of periodicals seems to be on the decline, so the committee is trying to reach the owners of the boxes.
Communities cannot prohibit the boxes from being placed on the sidewalk, the city attorney's office has said.