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CHARLESTON -- City officials are moving forward with their grant application to improve the city’s sidewalks, specifically those in dire need of repair.

City Council voted Tuesday to support and commit city labor to the sidewalk project and the Community Development Block Grant application.

The sidewalk project, should grant officials accept it, will allow the city to make a significant dent in the list of sidewalks in need of repair.

The project calls for a little over four miles of sidewalk removal, replacement and construction.

Many of the sections that would be earmarked for the project, including parts of Tyler and Taylor avenues, have seen significant disrepair.

According to the measure that was approved, the project would cost an estimated $326,208 in construction labor; $20,905 in construction engineering; and $94,021 in city equipment that would then be reimbursed through the grant.

Should the grant application get accepted by state officials, city crews would be able to start work on the project soon after and the work would take approximately two to three years to complete.

The money from the grant is technically earmarked for the city, but a project needs to be approved by state officials before they can use it, Pamperin has explained.

Also, the council repealed a city code rule that restricts people from using bicycles on certain streets. Ride Illinois, a non-profit organization focused on making the state more bike-friendly, made the recommendation to repeal the section, Pamperin said.

These streets included sections of Grant Avenue, Fourth Street, Sixth Street, Seventh Street, 10th Street and 11th Street, according to city code.


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