July 25, 2024

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What’s next for Battle Creek’s Capital Avenue Northeast?

Pennfield resident Nellie Briggs voluntarily pulls weeds from a garden along the Maple Street Historic District at Division Street and Capital Avenue Northeast on Wednesday, Sept. 1, 2021 in Battle Creek, Michigan. "I don’t like people coming into Battle Creek and meeting a weed patch," Briggs said.

Each day, some 9,000 vehicles drive down Capital Avenue Northeast.

The latest daily traffic estimate from the Michigan Department of Transportation highlights the number of people who use the road that runs concurrently with M-66 as a major artery into downtown Battle Creek, essentially serving as the city’s northern front door.

A typical Sunday drive on the 1.5-mile stretch of asphalt between Division Street and the Verona neighborhood will reveal people going to and from church services, residents sitting on porches at historic homes, children playing at Piper Park and commerce at the neighborhood’s business district.

It would also be hard to miss signs of blight and neglect along what is one of Battle Creek’s oldest and most visible neighborhoods.

This is a look at what people who live, work, volunteer and worship along Capital Avenue Northeast think about the neighborhood and its continuing evolution.

Capital Avenue residents and neighbors

Quashae Green walks home from a doctor appointment with her children on Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2021 in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Quashae Green is new to the Battle Creek area and just found a place to stay off Capital Avenue Northeast near Piper Park.  

“It’s a quiet neighborhood. I like it, and the park is right up the street,” she said. “I’m excited. It’s going to be my first place. It’s a fresh start for me.” 

Marissa and Crandall Sanford also are hoping to settle near Piper Park with their two young children.

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