South Third Street
Society seeks city money for engineering study
In the latest push to improve South Third Street, the German Village Society board of trustees has applied for $400,000 in Urban Infrastructure Recovery Funds to pay for a preliminary engineering study of the corridor.
"It will help us understand what each element of our priority list costs, and in what order we should pursue these projects," said Shiloh Todorov, German Village Society director.
The Urban Infrastructure Recovery Fund, or UIRF, is a central city capital improvement program overseen by the Department of Development in partnership with the public service, recreation and parks and public utilities departments on assessing the projects and administering the funds, said Susan DeLay, capital improvement manager for Columbus.
She said $6 million is available in current round of funding in the UIRF program area, which follows the city's 1950 boundaries.
Each project is scored based on several criteria, such as whether the project solves a real problem, how many residents will benefit and if there's an economic benefit.
Typically, the highest scoring proposal receives funding, DeLay said. A list of funded projects should be available in mid- to late September.
"We try to give every neighborhood something, so they have a shot," DeLay said of the German Village Society. "It's competitive."
The Third Street project priorities accomplish three things: improve safety, update deteriorating infrastructure and restore the historic feel to the corridor, Todorov said.
The key elements of the Third Street plan include replacing and restoring limestone curbs, adding pedestrian lighting, cleaning up utility lines and poles, consolidating signs to cut down on driver distractions and restoring the historic look of sign posts, she said.
The money would follow a separate $250,000 UIRF grant the city made to German Village in 2008.
Of the total amount given, $173,000 was spent on a streetscape study made in August 2010. The remainder was absorbed by the city.
Brian Santin, a member of the GVS board and former chairman of the streetscape committee, said he's optimistic about progress on Third Street.
"I certainly think it's an exciting time for the project," he said.
"It continues to show the dedication that the society and this community have to see this project this through to completion."