Friday, April 18, 2014
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Grant received for 9th Ave. bridge project

By Grayson Edds

 Managing Editor

The City of Belton was proud to announce the receipt of a $1.25 million grant from TxDOT last week.

 The grant will assist in the 9th Ave. bridge project, which will help to relieve traffic congestion on Main St.

 “We’re halfway there,” said City of Belton’s Public Information Officer Paul Romer. “The grant is going to pay for the hike and bike trails across it.”

 The bridge will connect Main St. and Loop 121, and the corresponding hike and bike trail project will form a 2.1 mile trail and connect three parks along Nolan Creek.

 “This will be the third phase of a trail system that began with a vision by the Belton City Council to provide a hike and bike trail system within the community that eventually will connect with trails throughout the region,” City Manager Sam Listi said in a recent press release.

The City has more than $3 million secured in commitments for the project, which is a little more than halfway to the almost $6 million project. The remaining $2,990,610 funds are subject to a grant from the Killeen-Temple Metropolitan Planning Organization for Category 7 transportation funds.

 Although the bridge will provide relief from traffic going to and coming from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, Romer said that’s not the primary reason for the project and therefore funds aren’t being sought from the university.

 “It will provide another exit for the university toward west Bell County and other locations and benefit there. Obviously, it will benefit the football games when traffic gets out, but that’s not the primary driver of it. It’s not football related. It’s a project to increase mobility for travelers in Belton.”