City to apply for state grant to fix streets

City Council Thursday gave its blessing to the administration to go after a $500,000 grant from the state Department of Community and Economic Development for streetscape improvements to areas near Memorial Homes with access to Memorial Park.

The work will include new sidewalks, curbs, accessible ramps to sidewalks, trees, crosswalks and lighting for Beeber, Oliver and Stevens streets and Sutton Avenue, according to John Grado, city engineer and director of community and economic development.

Other work is meant to create a better access to Memorial Park at the intersection of Oliver and Beeber streets.

Council President Bill Hall and others were supportive of the attempt to get the grant and noted how the match can be achieved. The match for the grant will be made with $300,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds and $200,000 of natural gas impact fees from Lycoming County.

The city also approved the administration’s request for $50,000 in facade improvement money for rental properties around the former Brodart neighborhood. Memorial Homes, a housing complex consisting of 40 apartments, 32 townhouses and two single family houses to be built at the former site of the Brodart warehouse. Construction of the apartments gets under way this year. The city is requesting $50,000 and $5,000 for administrative costs.