Florala gets $200K sidewalk grant

Published 1:11 am Saturday, August 10, 2013

Florala was awarded a more than $230,000 grant to make some sidewalks handicapped accessible.

Mayor Robert Williamson said Friday the $231,748 grant in federal transportation enhancement (TE) funds will allow for renovations on the blocks north and south of Fifth Avenue, along Fifth Street. It will require a 20 percent match, or approximately $46,000, of city funds.

The TE Program offers opportunities to help communities expand and enhance transportation projects for pedestrian and bicycle infrastructures and safety, scenic and historic highways, landscaping and scenic beautification, historic preservation and environmental mitigation. In Florala’s case, it was about making the city’s elevated sidewalks compliant with the American’s With Disabilities Act.

“We started this grant when we heard there was money available to help us get our elevated sidewalks at the town square, between Simply Chic and the Woody Long building, ADA compliant,” Williamson said. “We believe that if we’re not willing to reinvest in our community, why should we ask others to do the same? I applaud that we have a council that knows we can’t neglect reinvesting in our community.”

The state’s TE program is administered by the Alabama Department of Transportation.

Williamson said work is expected to begin in the spring.