The biking-walking corridor project in Harrison has received another financial boost.
Township Commissioner Robin Bergstrom said the township was notified that the project’s first phase for design and engineering has been awarded a $75,000 grant from the state Community Infrastructure and Tourism Fund (CITF).
It brings the total money received for the project to just under $1 million.
The biking-walking corridor would extend from the township’s Natrona neighborhood through the business district in Natrona Heights. It’s part of Harrison’s section of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail that links the township with the trail through Brackenridge and Tarentum.
The latest grant comes from gambling revenues collected by the state and will require a match from the township.
“I submitted an application for $100,000, and they approved $75,000,” Bergstrom said.
According to Bergstrom, the township has received $960,000 in grant money for the corridor’s design and engineering . She said that amount includes $800,000 from Allegheny County, $85,000 from the Allegheny County Health Department and now $75,000 from the state .
What Bergstrom is particularly proud of is that the state grant will be the first one to which the township will have to provide a match from its own funds.
The township commissioners unanimously approved that $25,000 match last week.
Bergstrom said the corridor will extend from River Avenue in Natrona, up the hill along Springhill Road then down Broadview Boulevard to the Brackenridge border at Mile Lock Lane.
The plan calls for one lane of the steep and winding Springhill Road to be dedicated to bicycle and pedestrian use. She said it is badly needed as residents of Natrona who don’t have a car have no other way to get to Natrona Heights since there is no public transportation through that part of the township.
Among the features of the corridor as the commissioners envision it is the installation of sidewalks and a streetscape with street lighting and landscaping all along its length, Bergstrom said.
Commissioner Chuck Dizard said the engineering and design phase is fundamentally important since it will create a comprehensive trail plan that will be the key to construction.
“It’s getting us to the point where we can apply for grants to actually build the sidewalks and do the landscaping,” Bergstrom said.