Project to Include Road Resurfacing and Streetscape Enhancements
Erie County Legislator Timothy Kennedy, City of Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Congressman Brian Higgins, New York State Assemblyman Mark J. F. Schroeder and Senator William Stachowski announced plans for a $2,322,000 investment along South Park Avenue in South Buffalo.
“After three years in the making, I am proud to announce, with the help of my partners in government, that the South Park Avenue Revitalization Project is now fully funded and will become a reality,” stated Legislator Kennedy. “This will restore a vital transportation corridor in the community and make the South Park Avenue commercial strip one of the finest looking routes in all of our city and region.”
Following his appointment to the Erie County Legislature, Kennedy vowed to work diligently at securing funds to enhance South Park Avenue. His office is located at 1928 South Park Avenue.
“I cannot stress enough the significance of this funding and how it will transform our neighborhood’s commercial district. While we have worked on and achieved small, incremental successes on the business strip, nothing can compare to the financial windfall this community will see for the first time in decades. This is a grand slam for the residents of all of South Buffalo and the Greater South Buffalo community,” said Kennedy.
In the coming weeks County Legislator Kennedy will be reaching out to business owners and community leaders in the South Park Avenue area to ask for their involvement on a Business and Citizen Advisory Committee tasked with making recommendations to project planners.
"Along with the investments that are being made on Seneca Street, these federal funds will provide that same type of improvements that strengthen South Park Avenue's infrastructure and enhance business activity along this important commercial strip in South Buffalo," said Mayor Brown. "I commend Congressman Higgins, Senator Stachowski and Assemblyman Schroeder for collaborating on this important effort, but I want to especially thank Erie County Legislator Tim Kennedy for moving this program forward, bringing in area businesses and community leaders to have input in the process and for coordinating the overall South Park Avenue restoration plan."
Planned improvements include: resurfacing of the street pavement, new street lighting and sidewalks, enhanced crosswalks, new landscaping, signal improvements with push buttons and count-down timers to assist pedestrians, and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant ramps.
“Improving our declining and aging infrastructure not only provides for safe and efficient travel for residents, it opens up new doors of opportunity for economic development,” said Congressman Higgins, a member of the House of Representatives Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. “This project will transform South Park’s business district providing a boost to existing small business owners, creating new attractive destination for consumers and drawing additional entrepreneur investment.”
“This major investment provides a new and exciting future for this historical stretch,” stated Assemblyman Mark Schroeder, “Partnerships with local agencies like the South Buffalo Chamber of Commerce will compliment the actual construction improvements to make South Park an exciting place to be for shoppers, diners and anyone who wants to experience everything South Buffalo has to offer.”
The road work will take place on a two-mile stretch along South Park Avenue between Bailey Avenue and the city line. Portions of South Park Avenue North of Smith Street will also be contained in the project scope. The preliminary design work will take place in early 2009 with construction slated to begin in the fall of 2009.
"In our effort to promote our area to outside business interests, we need to focus on the basics, including infrastructure and shovel-ready sites for development," added Senator Bill Stachowski. "But just as importantly, safe roads are important to residents as well. This investment of federal dollars will clearly serve both purposes."
The South Park Avenue Revitalization Project, initiated by Legislator Kennedy and advanced by Mayor Brown, Assemblyman Schroeder, Senator Stachowski and Congressman Higgins will be funded with federal dollars authorized through New York State. It is now on a priority list of federally funded transportation projects. For more information, contact Legislator Tim Kennedy’s office at 824-6180.