Lithopolis seeks grant for Columbus Street

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Village of Lithopolis officials hope to make improvements to Columbus Street in the summer or fall of 2009.

At Lithopolis Village Council’s Aug. 12 meeting, council approved submitting an application to the Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) to obtain funding to reconstruct Columbus Street from Market Street to approximately Delaware Street/Elder Road.

Funding for the proposed approximately $1.6 million project could include a $1.1 million OPWC grant and a $382,435 OPWC loan with Lithopolis kicking in the remaining $80,500.

The project would include road bed reconstruction, new curbs, new sidewalks, new storm sewer, water line relocation, and utility relocation.

"This is a no frills project," said Mayor Eric Sandine. "There won’t be such things as decorative streetlights or benches. It’s road construction only."

Sandine said Columbus Street needs the improvements because currently there is no base under the road.

"It’s dirt, chip and tar, and asphalt. That’s why we have problems with potholes," said Sandine.

The original plan was to reconstruct Columbus Street from Elder Road to Cedar Hall Road, but Sandine said the OPWC thought that project would be too large for the available funding. The mayor said Lithopolis would look at applying for OPWC monies in the next funding round to get the revenue to complete the other half of Columbus Street in the future.

Sandine said the OPWC should announce its funding award decisions by the end of 2008 or early 2009.

"If we get the funding we’ll be ready to start the project within six months," said Sandine.

New engineers

Council heard a presentation from GGC Engineers regarding consulting services the firm can provide the village.

GGC Director of Business Development Jennifer Emerick said her firm is a full service consulting engineer company with a familiarity with small towns and their needs as well as being a source for finding money for projects.

"We know how to go about getting funding," said Emerick.

GGC offered Lithopolis a $350 retainer contract under which the company can provide grant writing, funding consultations, and answer general questions. Any specific projects GGC would undertake for the village would be charged for separately.

"The contract doesn’t tie you to only using GGC," said Emerick, "but we do ask you come to us first and we certainly hope you can use us."

Other Lithopolis news

•Council approved a resolution for Lithopolis to join the Central Ohio Green Pact. The pact enables the village to obtain assistance and resources from the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) that would help in improving and enhancing the environment, recycling, preserving green space, and protecting air and water resources.

MORPC representatives will make a presentation about the pact at a future council meeting.

"Adopting this resolution is just a first step," said Sandine.

Sandine noted the village already does curbside recycling and considers environmental issues in its zoning.

•Council will vote on the Tri-County medical complex annexation at its Sept. 9 meeting.

"(If approved) we could start seeing income tax revenue (from this annexation) by Christmas," said Sandine.

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