Lawrenceville projects to give greater access to downtown

LAWRENCEVILLE -- In an effort to make its city more "pedestrian friendly," the Lawrenceville City Council OK'd on Monday night two more phases of the city's local community initiative project, which, when finished, will make two-way access for Clayton and Perry Streets, among other improvements.

The entire project, called the Lawrenceville Livability Community Initiative Project, will cost $577,500 with 80 percent funding by a Georgia Department of Transportation grant.

"This includes six years' worth of work to make the downtown area pedestrian friendly," said Councilman Tony Powell. "It's been voted on and paid for. This is the largest grant that has been awarded."

The project also will include work on Crogan and Pike streets, and improvements such as antique street lights. Kimley Horn Company is the contractor for this project.

In a separate contract, Kimley Horn was awarded the low bid of $17,000 to construct a pedestrian crosswalk near the city's parking garage. According to Powell, this contract had to be changed from the one approved at the last meeting.

"We as consumers have some power to do contracts the way we wanted," he said. "It doesn't change unless we vote on it."

The council also renewed its agreement with the Housing Authority for city personnel to repair and service the Authority's vehicles. Also passed was a similar pact, a new one, with Georgia Gwinnett College.

Mayor Judy Johnson proclaimed April as the Month of Military Children, and, in doing so, awarded pens to personnel of the local U.S. Army National Guard and their families. The following soldiers who have served overseas were recognized: 1st Sgt. Joe Neely, Sgt. First Class Tim Byrd, and Staff Sgt. Tim Bellinger. These members are part of Company A, 1st Battalion, 121st Infantry, 48th Brigade Combat Team, of Lawrenceville.

In other business, the Council:

* Awarded Leach Landscape a low bid of $91,459 to do landscape work at all city hall complexes, the police department, and work along Ga. Highway 124 to Moon Road.

* Announced that May 5 is the National Day of Prayer on the Lawrenceville Courthouse Square, and that May 22 is the Taste of Lawrenceville festivities.