(Crystal A. Proxmire, Oct. 28, 2013)
The orange barrels are almost gone and the ribbon has officially been cut as the West Nine Mile reconstruction project draws to a close.
Among the new features are permeable asphalt parking bays, 18 new on-street parking spaces, 46 new light poles with LED lighting, wider sidewalks, park benches, bike parking, recycling trash containers, a new pocket park, and solar powered crossing beacons. Beneath the street there is 2,600 feet of new water mains.
“Way back in 2006 we started planning because we knew we needed a new water main and that was the impetus for doing this. We knew we needed to rip up the street, so our good friends at the DDA said ‘well, if you’re gonna rip up the street, we need to help extend the feel and the look and the infrastructure for our downtown,” said Ferndale Mayor Dave Coulter at the Oct. 26 ribbon cutting. Congressman Sandy Levin was on hand to cut the ribbon, joined by many local dignitaries and business owners from the Ferndale Area Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Development Authority.
The $1.8 million project came mostly from grants from the State and from a Federal Highway Safety Grant. Of approximately $470,000 that came from the City, half came from the Major Streets Fund and half from the General Fund.
Coulter said he hopes the investment will encourage more visitors and business owners to come to that end of West 9 Mile. The project was titled “How the West Was One,” to symbolize the spirit of uniting the west end with the rest of the Downtown area.
Previous stories on the West 9 Mile Construction: