By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
SOUTHGATE – The Wayne County Commission approved American Rescue Plan Act funds for a park and pedestrian bridge crossing Trenton Road, Mayor Joseph Kuspa said March 15 at the City Council meeting.
The new park will be on the west side of the Southgate Tower, which is under renovation for new retail and residential units, while the new pedestrian bridge will provide connectivity between the new Southgate Tower park and the Kiwanis train park.
Kuspa said the $5 million in ARPA funding was approved by the Wayne County Commission March 2 and was the second largest project awarded in the county.
“ARPA funding is only awarded to projects that meet the program requirements and specifically assist communities with COVID recovery,” he said. “These funds will be used to construct a new public park, and pedestrian bridge at the corner of Trenton Road and Cambridge, and will complement the $46 million private investment in the redevelopment of the former PNC Tower and increase recreational options for our residents.”
Kuspa said the project will provide more walkability and connectivity between the new park and the existing Kiwanis Park.
He thanked County Commissioners Joseph Palamara and Al Haidous for shepherding the proposal through the ARPA subcommittee and the full County Commission.
Kuspa also praised city staff for their extensive and time-sensitive response to the application endeavor.
He said the process was begun under the leadership of former City Manager Dustin Lent and completed under new City Manager Dan Marsh.
Kuspa acknowledged the unanimous support of the City Council in bringing the project to fruition.
“Five million dollars is an incredible amount of funding and certainly something we could not have achieved with our general fund or even our parks millage,” he said. “Groundbreaking for the new park is scheduled for later this summer.”