A welcome sign greets drivers entering Lawrence along North Second Street in North Lawrence. Many in North Lawrence say the entryway into the city is better than it used to be but admit that there's room for improvement.
Rick Combs, owner of Combs Custom Cycle, 725 N. Second St., Suite A, wires a new ignition on a custom motorcycle in his North Lawrence shop. Combs' shop occupies one of the spaces in the North Town business building. Owners of North Town hope to attract more businesses to the building.
Eli Geiger, general manager at Riverfront Harley-Davidson in North Lawrence, parks a motorcycle outside the store. Across the street is JGladman Studio in a renovated stone building that once housed a radiator shop. Both shops are fairly new to North Lawrence.
A display case for shopper information and advertising is empty as is roughly 50 percent of the 88,000 square-foot outlet mall that opened with 22 stores in 1993 as the Tanger Factory Outlet Center. Today as the I-70 Business Center it is home to Protection One, the Department of Motor Vehicles, a branch of the Kansas Highway Patrol and Home Oxygen 2-U.
The shell of a vacant gas station frames North Second Street, and across the street the North Town business condos, built in 2005, that replaced an North Second and Third streets are of one six major gateways into Lawrence.