It’s harder to tell at ground level, but from above the design of the Town and Country Lanes sidewalk makes it abundantly clear. The idea to shape it as a bowling pin came from the architect. (Submitted)

By JASON COX
Of the Keizertimes

It’s hard to see what’s so special about the new look at Town and Country Lanes at ground level.

The hot air balloon group that took the photo with this story got a better idea – when viewed from above, the new sidewalk in front of the bowling alley takes on an obvious shape.

“They said they were going to recommend that flight path to everyone because of the bowling pin,” said Mardi Smith, marketing and programs director for the bowling center. [MAP: 1]

The design came from an architect at Carlson Veit Architects of Salem.

“Most people walking by don’t notice it,” said Don Lebold, owner of Town and Country Lanes.

The facelift – at least the part by the street – was funded with urban renewal dollars to the tune of just less than $120,000. It includes a rain garden, which has improved on-site drainage,” Lebold said.

“It’s working perfectly,” said Lebold, who noted the parking lot was notorious for high water during the rainy months.

The center self-funded new siding and painting to the building’s front.

“People say, man, it looks like you have a new bowling lane,” Lebold said.

Smith thinks the upgrades have improved drive-by traffic, “and I think it looks neater,” she said.