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The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) announced on Wednesday, January 30th that it is providing Baldwin City funding of $580,180, as part of a KDOT Transportation Alternative (TA) grant to construct a 6-foot concrete sidewalk along the southside of Elm Street from 8th Street westerly to the existing sidewalk at the Intermediate Elementary School ballfield complex easterly of Bullpup Drive. The City applied for this KDOT TA grant last fall.
The sidewalk will include such amenities as decorative overhead and bollard lighting, benches, and softscape of trees and groundcover. Additionally, it will be designed to accommodate all ages and will meet federal ADA standards. It will be constructed in the City’s existing rights-of-way and is approximately one mile in length.
The City estimates the total cost of the project to be roughly $815,000 and the State (KDOT) will pay 80% of the project costs and the City will match 20%. The City’s cost of the project is approximately $235,700, which includes additional costs for engineering and design, which are not eligible for funding. This state funding augments the City’s efforts to construct new sidewalks throughout the City and to provide pedestrian access for all ages.
Mayor Casey Simoneau says this sidewalk grant is an exciting time for Baldwin City. This helps the connectivity of our community and helps give our children a safe walking route to school. I am proud of all the work the city staff put into this project and getting this grant. Sidewalks are very important to me and our community, so this is an exciting time for us all.
City Administrator Glenn Rodden says the trail will serve the areas school children, adults and visitors. Community Development Director Ed Courton said “It will provide a safe route for children to walk or bike to the two elementary schools.” It will also provide city residents and visitors of all ages and abilities with a safe, attractive path for walking, running and bike riding. “This is not just a sidewalk, but a community asset and another mode of transportation said Mr. Courton.”
This project is the first part of a three segment sidewalk and trail development. In future grant submittals, the City will be applying for grant funding for the first segment of the Baldwin City-Ottawa, 10-foot shared use trail to be constructed on Midland Railway’s property, south of Highway 56 southerly to the historic Santa Fe Depot.
The City anticipates that construction of this sidewalk should be completed in the fall of 2020. The process of engineering, designing, bidding and construction for a project of this kind is normally a year and a half due to federal and State requirements.
If you have questions regarding this project, contact Ed Courton, Community Development Director at 785-594-6427.