must now raise
$300,000 to match two grants
MADISON, Ind. (October 2004) Indiana First
Lady Maggie Kernan on Sept. 20 officially presented the City of Madison
with a Transportation Enhancement Authority, or TEA, grant during a
short ceremony held at the Riverfront Gazebo in Madison.
The $500,000 grant will be used by the city to continue the Madison
Riverfront Development Project. This project will continue the efforts
to improve the citys river gateway. Among the planned improvements
are completing the sidewalks, installing interpretive walkways, planting
trees, plus riverbank improvements, intersection improvements, public
restroom facilities and other amenities for visitors including the development
of entrances to Madisons riverfront area.
by Don Ward
First Lady Maggie Kernan chats with Madison Riverfront Development
Committee chairman Gayle Crozier prior to presenting the city
with a $500,000 check.
This planned improvement to Madisons riverfront
will continue to enhance this thriving city, as well as tell the story
of Madisons rich history, Kernan said. Because of
the hard work of its citizens, Madisons riverfront is a model
for community redevelopment and attracts thousands of visitors to the
banks of the Ohio each year.
The committee previously received a $700,000, for which it had to raise
20 percent, or about $175,000 in matching funds. The committee had raised
about $80,000 toward reaching that goal. Now with this latest award,
the committee must raise about $300,000 to match the two grants combined.
The committee had applied for $1 million when it received its initial
grant back in December. This was the committees second grant award
of federal money.
Several local officials and townspeople attended the brief ceremony.
Madison Mayor Al Huntington, former mayor and now State Rep. Markt Lytle
and Riverfront Development Committee President Gayle Crozier each spoke.
The Madison Riverfront Development Project has been ongoing for
over 15 years with tremendous broad based community support, Kernan
said. Prior to receiving any grant monies, the community has raised
$1.5 million to beautify Madisons Historic Riverfront. We are
excited to receive the TEA grant for $500,000, which will be used to
stabilize and beautify the levee.
The Transportation Enhancement Grant Program provides for the implementation
of a variety of non-traditional transportation projects, ranging from
the restoration of historic transportation facilities, to bike and pedestrian
facilities, to landscaping and scenic beautification, and to the mitigation
of water pollution from highway runoff.
The federal government provides eighty percent of the funds, while local
applicants pay for the remainder. This month, Gov. Joseph Kernan announced
a total of $18.3 million dollars in transportation enhancement grants
for 35 different projects around Indiana.
The First Lady has made several stops to officially present the grant
checks to these communities.
The river is where it all began for us, and because of the river,
Madison was one of the first counties settled in Indiana, said
Huntington. So with this project, weve moved it back to
where it all happened the real focal point of Madison.
Huntington credited the leadership of the committee, going all the way
back to its beginning many years ago under then-Mayor Lytle. He named
three original committee members, Forrest Douglass, Harold Hadley and
the late Georgia Holwager.
The committee raised its initial $1.5 million by selling bricks, lamp
posts, benches and overlooks. This is the second TEA grant the committee
Huntington praised the efforts of grant writer Betsey Vonderheide, who
also happens to work as the citys director of special projects.
Huntington said Madison was the first city in the area to develop a
riverfront project and has since become the model for other communities,
who have followed. These cities include Jeffersonville, Noblesville
and Bluffton in Indiana.
Crozier praised the committees efforts, saying We hope to
now close in on the completion of a project that began 20 years ago.
With this grant, we can now at least see the end.
Lytle said former Mayor Charles Vaughn first came up with the idea of
developing the river. I remember he even came down here and started
clearing brush on weekends.
Lytles father, Markt A. Lytle, a former mayor, and the Madison
Regatta Committee also helped improve the riverfront over the years,
Recently, the committee received a $6,000 contribution from the Madison
Chautauqua committee. The city has pledged $76,900 to get the engineering
started but expects to be re-imbursed from the fund at a later date,
A group of Ball State University students took on the project, collecting
input from residents and drawing up plans for the development. Since
then, two grants and many private contributions have made the project
a financial reality. Its really a community effort,
Lytle said. And its one of those projects a city does that
gets 100 percent approval from the residents.
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