Mount Airy, Taneytown, Union Bridge and Carroll County are lining up to claim shares of a little-used fund that pays half the cost of building sidewalks.
The State Highway Administration allocated Carroll County $125,000 in 1995 under a three-year program to finance construction of sidewalks along state roads and in urban revitalization districts.
Mount Airy received $12,750 last year for sidewalks in front of a microbrewery in the town's Main Street business district, which leaves the county's fund entering its third fiscal year with about $112,000 left, according to Howard Noll, county engineering bureau chief.
The towns and county face an Aug. 1 deadline to submit their projects to the SHA, which has allocated about $2 million of the $4.2 million available statewide since the program started three years ago.
"Many of our roads have become Main Streets. There are not only traffic needs, there are pedestrian needs," said Dennis German, SHA statewide sidewalk coordinator.
"It started slowly, but in the last few months it's sped up," German said. Urban areas have generally been more aggressive in pursuing the money, he said.
It is uncertain whether the program will be renewed when it expires at the end of June.
Projects in Carroll include:
Mount Airy -- Main Street, east side from Watersville Road intersection 270 feet north to Dorseytown line. The sidewalks would allow Dorseytown children to walk safely to the Mount Airy Elementary School playground at Watersville Road and Main Street. The estimated cost is $4,600.
The Town Council will schedule a public meeting with residents, who would share the cost. Councilman Norman Hammond, who initiated the proposal, estimated the cost at $17 a linear foot, with the state paying half, the town one-fourth and residents one-fourth.
Union Bridge -- A walkway through town wetlands to allow walkers and joggers to skirt the intersection of Route 75 and Main Street, which has heavy truck traffic. The town would also like to reconstruct sidewalks on both sides of Main Street from the railroad tracks to the Route 75 intersection. The project would be 2,000 feet of new sidewalk and 600 feet of reconstructed walk. Town management consultant James Schumacher said he hasn't estimated the costs.
Taneytown -- West side of Baltimore Street from Ball Park Road to the Taneytown Memorial Park entrance drive, to provide access to the park for pedestrians, "without having to walk along the side of the road," said Mayor W. Robert Flickinger.
The project includes a brick walkway in front of the war memorial at the park entrance. The distance is 1,000 feet. The estimated cost is $30,700.
Carroll County -- East side of Washington Road from Westminster High School to Carroll Community College. Linking the high school and community college with sidewalks, about 2,800 feet, will cost an estimated $71,000.
"We feel it's a good area to try to tie the schools together," Noll said.
He said no sidewalks are planned north of the high school toward Westminster city limits, because the county wanted to reserve some of the fund for town projects.
Pub Date: 7/25/97