By Ethan Colbert
Seniors, students and other pedestrians may soon have an easier time getting around Frankford if the northern Pike County community is able to secure a grant for new sidewalks.
The grant application, which is being co-authored by the City of Frankford, the Pike County Economic Development Authority and the Mark Twain Regional Council, seeks funding for the construction of new sidewalks, curbs, and gutters on the west side of Low Street from Jasper Street to Main Street.
The grant application is also seeking funding to remove the old sidewalk, according to PCDA Executive Director Carolyn Wisecarver.
In her interview, Wisecarver said she believed that the city would have a competitive application compared to other cities that are also seeking funding through this Missouri Department of Transportation Enhancement Grant.
“The thing that I think will set this application apart is that this was a project that we have already started,” Wisecarver said. “We started something and now is our chance to finish it.”
According to MoDOT officials, the grant application is due later this fall and announcement of funds being awarded for projects is slated for September.
In her interview, Wisecarver said she was referring to a grant that the city received earlier this decade to replace sidewalks from School Street to Main Street.
As was previously reported by the Times, due to a miscalculation by the city’s engineer, the project came in several thousand dollars over budget and had to be scaled back from a sidewalk intending to span four blocks to a solitary block.
“This is a continuance of that same project,” Wisecarver said.
According to Wisecarver, she hopes the grant review committee will consider four things when considering the Frankford grant application.
“First, I think we need to stress that this is the primary entrance into the city and that this is what people, potential residents and businesses, see when they come into Frankford,” Wisecarver said.
Wisecarver also mentioned in her interview how having an improved sidewalk that connects into the walking trail at the Frankford Elementary campus would help encourage physical fitness amongst the residents of Frankford. Wisecarver said she also planned to tout how the sidewalk is currently used by school-age children who are walking to school and will help improve handicap accessibility in the Frankford’s Low Street neighborhood.
After the completion of this sidewalk, Wisecarver said she and representatives with PCDA and Mark Twain Regional Council of Governments will begin to work with the city to pursue grant funding for new sidewalks along Main Street.
“Depending on the cost, our ultimate goal will be to get the sidewalks on both sides of Main Street replaced,” Wisecarver said.