Prairie Township approves funding for sidewalk program

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By Amanda Ensinger
Staff Writer

A local township is moving forward with an annual program to repair sidewalks in the community.

At a recent Prairie Township meeting, the board approved advancing $100,000 from the general fund to the 2022 sidewalk fund for the program.

Recently, the board approved charging residents $37 to have a 4-foot sidewalk removed and replaced and $39 to have a 6-foot sidewalk removed and replaced. The cost for curb and gutter removal and replacement is $48 per linear foot. The cost of concrete drive approach removal and replacement is $70 a square yard.

“This year, the minimum cost per address is $1,500,” said Dave McAninch, assistant township administrator.

The program, which replaces dangerous sidewalks in the township, has been taking place for over 15 years.

The program offers property owners a 10-year interest free loan to repair their sidewalks. The loans are added to the property taxes of residents and paid off over a decade.

Previously the program was voluntary, but in recent years the township added a component to the program where they make residents replace sidewalks that are dangerous. Also, residents can report sidewalks that need to be repaired.

In 2020 and 2021 the program was made all voluntary as a result of the financial situation many Americans are facing due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, this year the program will go back to being involuntary.

In other news, McAninch asked the board to approved the proposed schedule for phase three construction of the Galloway Road Sports Complex. Phase three will include four months of construction to create a One Field.

The One Field project includes creating an artificial turf field that is designed specifically for individuals with special needs. The field will have a hard surface, allowing people in crutches or wheelchairs to use the field more easily and won’t be as restricting as a natural field would be. The new field will be used for soccer, football, and other field sports.

According to Michael Pollack, director of the community center, the goal is to create an innovative field that makes playing sports more accessible to all.

The cost for the field is approximately $1 million and according to leadership, a large part of the project was provided via donations, as well as capital funding.

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