Weekly Feature



2015-05-13 / Front Page

Village sidewalk improvements to begin this week

by ANNA WALTERS Reporter


Williamsville Mayor Brian Kulpa, left, stands with Trustee Dan DeLano, U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins, Trustee Al Yates and Williamsville School Board member Jay Smith on Stanton Street during a Friday press conference on village sidewalk improvements. Construction begins this week around village neighborhoods. 
Photo by David F. ShermanPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Williamsville Mayor Brian Kulpa, left, stands with Trustee Dan DeLano, U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins, Trustee Al Yates and Williamsville School Board member Jay Smith on Stanton Street during a Friday press conference on village sidewalk improvements. Construction begins this week around village neighborhoods. Photo by David F. ShermanPurchase color photos at www.BeeNews.com Sidewalk improvements are set to start this week in the Village of Williamsville, beginning at the corner of Stanton and N. Ellicott streets.

“The Village of Williamsville is proud,” Mayor Brian Kulpa said Friday during a press conference. “We’re proud of our heritage as a village. We’re proud that we’re a small, dense, tight-network community, and we recognize that … we need to finally deal with these gaps in our sidewalks, these crossings that might not be accessible.”

Kulpa noted that the project is about trying to make things easier for village residents, specifically youths and seniors who will benefit from the sidewalk network being completed.

The village has received more than $460,000 in federal funding for the improvements through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School program.

U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins also participated in the press conference.

“The Safe Routes to School initiative, first established through the 2005 federal highway bill, provides funding to give children and parents more efficient and safer options to walk or bike to school,” he said.

The work, which will continue through the fall, will target the areas surrounding Williamsville South High School, Christian Central Academy, Mill Middle School and SS. Peter & Paul School.

According to a prepared statement, the sidewalk improvements will take place along portions of 15 roads, including: School Street, North Ellicott Street, Eagle Street, Belmont Place, Edward Street, Gordon Street, Arend Street, Chalmers Street, Stanton Street, Glen Avenue, North Long Street, Park Drive, Garden Parkway, Oakgrove Drive and Hirschfield Drive.

“These improvements will provide a safe place for children to play and get to school, enhance the streetscape in local neighborhoods and continue efforts to promote a pedestrian-friendly village atmosphere,” Higgins said.

In the wintertime, the village will be plowing the sidewalks, Kulpa said. He said Higgins is supportive of infrastructure improvements and has been a constant source of inspiration for the village as it takes on projects.

“We are pleased to work together, the federal government, village government, school districts, to quite literally, through this construction, lay the foundation for a great community for many years to come,” Higgins said.

Kulpa also thanked members of the Village Board, especially Trustee Basil Piazza, who have worked on the project to make sure each piece of sidewalk being laid is a sound public investment.

“I’m really excited that this is a beginning of a project that isn’t just Main Street-focused, that really focuses on all our neighborhoods,” Kulpa said.

email: awalters@beenews.com

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