Waveland Avenue to soon see sidewalks - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Waveland Avenue to soon see sidewalks

Sidewalks on both sides of Waveland Avenue are about to become a reality. (Photo source: WLOX) Sidewalks on both sides of Waveland Avenue are about to become a reality. (Photo source: WLOX)

Sidewalks on both sides of Waveland Avenue are about to become a reality. City leaders announced funding for a new project to make the busy road safer a week to the day after a 23-year-old woman was struck and killed by what officials believe was a hit-and-run driver.

Right now, there are no sidewalks along the busy two lane roadway.

Mention Waveland Avenue to a mom with young children and you'll hear plenty of concerns.

"I've always been worried about my children and how they're going to navigate the road and the danger of it with people driving and the traffic being so heavy," said Waveland resident Stacey Cato.

One week after the young lady's body was discovered, city leaders announced a project that will make Waveland Avenue a safer place for walkers and bikers.

"We were approved for the sidewalk project," said Waveland

Mayor Mike Smith.

Smith said the city's previous administration began talking about adding sidewalks to Waveland Avenue a couple of years ago. Three months ago, his administration applied for a transportation improvement grant through MDOT. This week, the city was awarded a $1.1 million grant to proceed with the project.

"Which would be for a five foot sidewalk on both sides of Waveland Avenue. But that money also includes covering up the ditches and any right of ways that we need to purchase," explained Mayor Smith.

The sidewalks will span the entire length of Waveland Avenue from Highway 90 to the railroad tracks at Central Avenue. The mayor, who lives on Waveland Avenue, said citizens' safety is his main concern.

"One of the important things for our kids, we don't want them on our streets, and this would put them on the sidewalk from their house to the bus stop, and that's real important to me," said Smith.

Cato agreed. "This is great once it gets done, not only for our children, but for adults, as well for riding bikes. I think this will be a wonderful thing for Waveland."

The mayor said the grant the city will receive is an 80/20 matching grant. He said the city has it's share in the bank. He also said the project will have to be designed and engineered and the right of ways purchased before the work can start.

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