On Thursday morning, the West End Merchants Coalition gathered at Hammonds House for their monthly meeting. At the morning breakfast they gathered what the $18million dollar grant could potentially mean to the West End area and business corridor.
In all, the southwest corridor project includes 16 accessible points of entry with ADA-accessible ramps and stair systems at nine cross-streets, including Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard, Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Lee Street and Murphy Avenue. It includes a 14-foot wide concrete trail, two foot shoulders and landscaping associated with the greenway corridor. Lighting, utilities, significant retaining wall infrastructure, security cameras and signage also will be constructed as part of the project. Modern streetcar transit is planned for a future stage of this corridor’s development.
The TIGER V grant covers roughly 42 percent of the total project cost, which is estimated at $43 million and includes the cost of right-of-way, design, demolition and construction. The project’s benefits include the creation of a bicycle and pedestrian safe transportation corridor with connections to four local schools, direct access from neighborhoods to four parks, and a significant regional quality of life amenity for the area.