Grovetown leaders agreed Monday to a contract to expand a popular city park and also approved a first reading of an ordinance that would require sidewalks in new residential developments.
The sidewalk ordinance will require developers to install the paved walking paths on both sides of the roadways and along the perimeter of all residential districts bordering public or private roads.
"We've got these subdivisions adjacent to the middle school and some of the kids are going to be walking on that Harlem-Grovetown Highway to the middle school, and we need to have those sidewalks out there," Mayor Dennis Trudeau said.
City leaders have been pushing for the ordinance for a long time.
"The majority of that property is going to be the responsibility of the city," he said.
All completed residential areas, where ownership of roads has already been turned over to the city, including some of the property and developments around the middle school, will be exempt as long as the property zoning does not change, according to the proposed ordinance.
A second and final reading of the ordinance will be held at the city council's next meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Oct. 9 at city hall.
Also at Monday's city council meeting, board members approved a contract with the Georgia Department of Transportation to receive $300,000 in greenspace funds to extend The Grovetown Trails at Euchee Creek.
The park, which opened in the spring of 2004 on 44.7 acres of land bordering Euchee Creek at Harlem-Grovetown Road, includes two miles of trails, a rock den, parking area, a 100-feet-deep stocked pond, a 300-foot bridge, rock outcroppings, picnic areas and an overlook.
The trails stretch behind Grovetown Middle School. The construction will extend the trails by about three quarters of a mile to meet Wrightsboro Road, Trudeau said. They will allow middle school pupils to study biology and nature firsthand. The park's second phase also will include restroom facilities.
"We're looping some for the trails we've already got," Trudeau said, which will eliminate a few dead-end trails.
The project will be funded by the $300,000 in DOT funds and $75,000 of city money. The contracts will be reviewed and approved by state DOT officials before the city can bid out the project.
Trudeau said he expects the city to solicit contractor bids for the project by November. Hopefully, he said, the extension, which he expects to take about 180 days to construct, will be complete by June.
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