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Sycamore’s list of street fixes grows

Published: Tuesday, March 19, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

SYCAMORE – Fourteen Sycamore streets and an alley are on the city’s list to be improved in the proposed 2013 Street Maintenance Program, which was presented Monday to the Sycamore City Council.

The nearly $2.4 million plan to repair and resurface several streets this summer is part of the city’s effort to maintain the functionality and appearance of its roadways.

The program, which is funded by the local 2-cent per gallon gasoline tax and half percent home-rule sales tax, was developed in 2008 and has since improved about 7.25 miles of streets and 15 alleys.

Priority areas on the list are Meadow Lane, Lincolnshire Drive, West Stonehenge Drive, Lincoln Street, Kishwaukee Drive, Wild Street, Hillcrest Drive and East High Street. The entire list of streets and alleys to be repaired through 2017 sits at 74 projects.

“We’re confident we can really work through this list in the next four years and continue to add streets over the years as needed,” Sycamore City Manager Brian Gregory said.

Bethany Road will undergo the largest upgrade with about $1 million of the city’s street maintenance fund combined with $450,000 in state grants. The maintenance plan calls for a widening and resurfacing of the road east of Peace Road to east of Aster Road.

“Bethany Road has been on our radar for quite awhile,” Sycamore Mayor Ken Mundy said.

The widening of the road will extend it to three lanes with a center-turn lane, making it more accessible to semitrailers, Mundy said.

Mundy said he is pleased with the progress the program has made in the past five years, even with the downturn of the economy. He commended the council for keeping its promise and not redirecting the street maintenance funds elsewhere in times of economic hardship.

The council also looked at changes to the city’s Downtown Facade Improvement Program, which maintains a consistent appearance among the residences, businesses and other buildings in downtown Sycamore.

The city has general capital funds available to qualified downtown building owners who need improvements. The city will match up to $5,000 in eligible improvement costs per building.

Grant applications will be available in April. There is a priority period in which applications are accepted during May. Applications submitted after May 31 will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

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