Mural Along 12th Street Corridor Showcases Thriving Erie Businesses
What makes you "Erie proud?" One local business along a manufacturing corridor is letting people know with their eye-popping message.
Seven years ago, at the corner of Cherry and West 12th Street, American Tinning and Galvanizing Company painted a mural on their building. Each year, with a positive message about Erie.
"So this year, I was kind of struggling with a theme, for something new, and a dear friend of mine said why don't you do something on the 12th street corridor?" explained Robin Sheppner, CEO of American Tinning and Galvanizing.
Sheppner sketched out her idea, and worked with Fast Signs, who has painted each mural. Her idea stemmed from the CBS documentary, that shed Erie in a negative light.
"There was a lot of bitterness in our community about, that is not an accurate picture, so we set out to change that tone," said Sheppner.
Passerby's can now see the powerful image of Rosie the Riveter, to highlight the women in the manufacturing field. Statistics line the wall showcasing the businesses between Sassafras and Greengarden. At least 68 businesses, employing more than 1000 people, bringing in over 200 million dollars into Erie.
Other companies on the 12th street corridor are working hard to show Erie there are businesses in the warehouses, and they're thriving.
"I guess, they don't know what they don't know, well now they'll know there's a business on 12th Street and we're killing it," said Justin Fried, Owner of NFI Empire.
NFI Empire has resided on West 12th Street for almost two years. In the past few months, they've added windows wraps, hung up an American flag, and have more planned, including lighting and new signs.
"There was mention, a couple months ago, that 12th Street was kind of ugly, and dying, so we wanted to do something to kind of revitalize it and let people know we are here," explained Fried.
Senator Dan Laughlin has made several stops at businesses in the corridor, to see how he can help. He said the mural, and other work being done is needed for this community.
"12th Street is one of the main corridors when you come to into our town to get there, if it looks bright and cheerful, and if there's some enthusiasm there, it's obviously going to help our public image," said Senator Laughlin.
To continue with the theme of "12th Street Proud", American Tinning and Galvanizing Company has ordered yard signs that will be distributed to 50 businesses between the borders, with the "12th Street Proud, #ErieProud" message.