Grant will help residents, mayor says
The city's East End should see improvements by year's end or early 2006.
By TIM YOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
NILES -- Mayor Ralph Infante says a $300,000 grant the city is receiving will improve the quality of life for East End residents.
The city has been told it will receive a distressed cities grant from the Ohio Department of Development.
Leslie J. Warner, office chief of DOD's Office of Housing and Community Partnerships, informed the city that 33 communities had asked for a total $9.3 million.
When the grant selections were made, 10 communities -- also including Girard in Trumbull County -- got a total $3 million.
Infante said the Niles grant will be used in 10 projects in the low- to moderate-income area.
Where funds will go
About $111,600 will be spend to correct draining problems on Ann and Thomas streets, Baldwin Street, Forest Street and Baldwin, Fenton and Baldwin streets, and Spring Street, from Walnut Street to Olive Street.
Another $10,000 will be spent on a sanitary sewer on Forest Street.
Infante said a sanitary sewer is being constructed in the area using state Issue 2 money. The sewer will be extended a block to service Forest.
An additional $161,500 will be used for sidewalk improvements at: Spring, from Walnut Street to Olive; Olive, from Spring to Belmont Street; Scott Street, from Mason Street to Henry Street; and Grant Street, from Walnut to the railroad tracks.
More than $25,000 will be used to widen the intersection at Olive and Spring and $10,000 for new and updated playground equipment at Murphy Park.
During neighborhood hearings to determine where the money should be spent, Infante said, residents wanted the vacant house at 505 Pratt St. to be razed and the lot to be cleaned up. The city will spend $6,550 to demolish the structure.
Work will begin on the projects by the end of the year or the beginning of 2006.
"I can't believe we got it," Infante said of the grant.
"It's nice to mix city money with grant money," the mayor said of being able to maximize the use of tax dollars.