News Flash

2020 - Spotlight - Environmental Services

Posted on: December 8, 2020

City spruces up Street of Ten Friends historical marker

Large wooden hanging Street of Ten Friends sign is surrounded by flowers and shrubbery

PHOTO #1: The Street of Ten Friends sign at the corner of North and Main streets was recently renovated by the City of Victoria.

PHOTO #2: From left, Benjamin Anthony Treviño and Chris Ceballos, with the City of Victoria Building Services, hang the restored Street of Ten Friends sign Oct. 15 at the corner of North and Main streets.

2 men wearing face masks hang a wooden sign under a wooden shelterPHOTO #3: The former Street of Ten Friends sign is visibly weathered after it was taken down Oct. 15.

PHOTO #4: From left, Caleb Moraida and Javier Salinas, with the City of Victoria Community Appearance Division, add plants around the Street of Ten Friends sign Nov. 13.

A weathered wooden sign with peeling paint sits near an empty roofed area where a sign could be hungPHOTO #5: From left, Joseph Vargas, Korey Parks and Jackie Yates, with the City of Victoria Community Appearance Division, add plants around the Street of Ten Friends sign Nov. 13.

PHOTO #6: Multicolored flowers sit in plastic tubs on a flatbed trailer near the Street of Ten Friends sign before they are planted Nov. 13.

In a flowerbed, a man digs a hole while another man scoops dirt around a recently planted plant.The City of Victoria recently renovated the Street of Ten Friends sign at North and Main streets and added new landscaping, providing visitors with a vibrant visual cue that they’ve entered Victoria’s historic downtown.

“The Street of Ten Friends sign is a well-known landmark and the gateway to downtown,” said Joel Novosad, director of the City of Victoria Convention & Visitors Bureau. “This project ties into our mission of welcoming visitors to our city and encouraging residents to take pride and explore Victoria.”

Near the sign, two men dig a hole while a woman kneels. A plant in a plastic pot sits near the holeThe Street of Ten Friends sign had been deteriorating since the protective roof over it was destroyed during Hurricane Harvey. As part of the renovation process, the roof was rebuilt and the weathered sign was replaced with a fresh one.  

The sign now hanging at the entrance to downtown may seem to be a copy, but in fact, it is the original sign. Novosad said his research revealed that the original sign was damaged before the City assumed management of the CVB. The sign was replaced with a replica, repaired and put in storage. The original sign was created by renowned Victoria artist Tom Jones, who has more than 400 historical paintings, sculptures and other works to his credit.

Multicolored flowers sit in plastic tubs on a flatbed trailer“When I realized that the sign we had in storage was the original Tom Jones sign, I knew we had to give it the place of honor it deserved,” Novosad said.

The City’s Community Appearance Division added landscaping around the sign, filling out the pavement and adding plants in a variety of shapes and colors. The team used a mix of xeriscape plants that will flourish year-round with little watering and flowering plants that will last through the winter. In the spring, the flowers will be replaced.

Jackie Yates, Community Appearance Division supervisor, said she hopes to add further touches at the site, such as hanging baskets, a pair of small trees behind the sign and a bench in the front.

The Street of Ten Friends, now Main Street, takes its name from Victoria founder Martín De León and nine others who were instrumental in the early development of the city.

“Without Martín De León, there is no Victoria,” Novosad said. “These types of renovation projects are important because they inspire residents to take pride in the city’s history and its present.”

To learn more about Victoria’s historic sites, visit www.explorevictoriatexas.com.