Locust reviews sidewalk plan

Published 4:05 pm Monday, September 16, 2019

By Shannon Beamon, staff writer

Contractors will soon begin laying a sidewalk through the center of Locust at nearly no cost to the city.

The project, which will run from Town Center Barbershop down the south side of Market Street, turn up to N.C. Highway 24-27 and end at First Bank, will be funded by the state’s Safe Routes to School program. The initiative granted Locust $250,000 toward road safety projects near Locust Elementary earlier this fiscal year.

At Thursday night’s meeting, the city council settled on Charles Contracting LLC. to begin that work.

“Once we award this, they can start their work,” City Manager Cesar Correa said.

The city used a similar grant a few years ago to install sidewalks along N.C. Highway 200, near the Lion’s Club and down Smith Street, as well as a walking trail around the athletic complex. The grant covered all expenses except engineering, surveying and easement expenses.

The current grant will function the same way. The city will be responsible for about $20,000 in engineering and surveying related expenses. However, unlike last time, the city may have some leftover money.

According to their contractor, the project is estimated to cost about $169,000. Since the remaining funds are not enough to complete another sidewalk project, council members motioned to have any remaining money put into street repairs along Market Street.

“(The state) had originally suggested that,” Correa said.

He said the project was estimated to cost a little under the $250,000 even before bidding began.

“We’ll ask them if we can use the rest of the money to do as much work on Market Street as we can,” Correa said.

According to the contract, work on the project should be completed by Dec. 1.

The Locust City Council also:

• Swore in new police officer Chris McDaniel;

• Moved to begin the annexation process for 534-B Browns Hill Road. This is at the request of property owners who would like to benefit from the city’s amenities. Their property is adajacent to the current city limits.

• Approved a development agreement with JBH Development, LLC.

• Heard comments from resident Tim Fesperman. He thanked the council and city staff for helping resolve traffic issues near Locust Elementary and some recent sewer issues at his home.