Jun. 22—Maybe the third try is the charm.
After twice failing to pass plans to come up with designs of an improved Erie Avenue, the City Council agreed Monday night during its Finance Committee meeting to move forward with discussions of roadwork ideas at its July 12 gathering.
Representatives of CrossRoad Engineers of Beech Grove told the council that after the last rejection, they opted to rework details. The new focus for a survey and design will encompass the entire stretch of Erie from Fifth to 17th streets at a cost of $585,000. The fee would cover costs linked to survey work, utility coordination fees, and permitting and bidding expenses.
The design would be for a total reconstruction of the avenue, said a representative of CrossRoad. Specific ideas are yet to be determined, but could include resurfacing and making sidewalks and parking stalls wider, along with additions of trees, streetlights and concrete pavers.
"Parking would remain on both sides," said Arin Shaver, executive director of the Planning Department, at a previous council meeting.
"This road is an important road connection in our community," she said after Monday's meeting. "But rethinking the design of the road and making improvements to the structure itself, we will be able to provide better quality entrance in and out of our community."
If the council OKs the work, then CrossRoad Engineers also would be seeking council approval to apply for a Community Crossings Matching Grant through the Indiana Department of Transportation. The grant could leave the city with a price tag of approximately $1 million for the Erie work, with an additional $1 million or so from the state.
If the city receives the funding, monies would be available by 2022.
Likewise, Cicott Street work would carry a cost of around $1.3 million. If a Community Crossings grant were given to the city for this project, then expenses would be split, with Logansport paying approximately $650,000.
Early suggestions for a survey and design of this stretch of road — which would be done in two phases: Bartlett Street to Taft Street and Taft Street to Clinton Street — include new sidewalks, a 5-foot walk area on the west of Cicott, 8-foot walking area or trails to the east, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-approved curb ramps, pavement repairs, and possible new street lighting.
Nothing is set in stone as of yet, according to Mark Jesse and Landin Grogg of A&Z Engineering, but councilmembers did agree to move the topic through to the July 12 meeting. During this gathering, they will vote on whether or not to approve the estimated $134,000 in survey and design fees to the Fort Wayne engineering firm.
Mayor Chris Martin previously said that he would like to have both road projects fulfilled. He wants residents along Cicott and Erie to know that their government has not forgotten about them. Additionally, he said, it has been more than 30 years since Erie has had any work done on it.
Yes, it comes with a hefty price tag due to the 52-foot width in some places of the road, but, Martin said, it's imperative to improve this area because it's one of the entryways into the city.
He hopes to use some of the city's stimulus monies toward the projects, if approved.
Of the $400,000 in CARES Act monies that became available to Logansport, the council would like to move approximately $243,000 into the County Economic Development Income Tax (CEDIT) fund for replacement of dollars spent to help the small business program throughout the pandemic. The remainder would move into the general fund.
The amount was based off of public safety payroll, said Dep. Mayor Jacob Pomasl.
And because these individuals — from police officers to firefighters — were on the front lines throughout the pandemic, Larry Hood, councilman, said he would like to use some monies as a one-time payment to law enforcement officers. He would like each officer to get $1,500, with other city employees receiving around $750 per person.
"This is how we could recognize these people for their work," he said. "It would be a great way to thank them. It would be a morale thing."
Reach Kristi Hileman at email@example.com or 574-732-5150