Authorization of a local match of $50,000 for the “Jayhawk Boulevard Streetscaping Project” was agreed upon during the Lawrence City Commission meeting Tuesday night. With the authorization also came a letter of support for the Transportation Alternatives Grant Application. The authorization and support came with a 5-0 vote from the commission.
The “streetscaping” project is to build a bus shelter, based on a historic trolley shelter, and other amenities adjacent to Strong Hall, according to the project proposal. It is only one of many projects that is now in the works on Jayhawk Boulevard. Boulevard has been under construction for two years now, with two more years still to go. The purpose of the construction was to update the look and restore the historic look, according to the LJ World.
“This looks like a great project. I’m proud to be partners with KU, and ensure that this happens,” said Lawrence Mayor Mike Amyx.
Total, the project will cost $250,000, with the $50,000 coming from the joint City of Lawrence/KU Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) fund. KDOT provides money for all Kansas transit providers, and in 2015, allocated $1,054,945 to Lawrence and KU together. The Lawrence Transit system and KU Transit system submits data together, as KDOT distributes money based upon population, ridership and revenue miles.
KU’s request for a local match of $50,000 is eligible under the 2013 Memorandum of Understanding which is between the City of Lawrence and the University, according to a memo put out by the city commission. Part 11C, General Provisions/Funding, of the memorandum states that state or federal funds generated by any transit-related statistic must be shared by the city and the university.
The remaining $200,000 is planned to come from KU’s application to KDOT’s transportation alternatives grant. This is the same grant that the city will be applying for in order to obtain money for the construction of the Lawrence Loop and Safe Routes to Schools.
“I’m sure it will all be really nice for the winter,” said Katie Fine, a freshman at KU. “But I think we should bring back the trolley, I think that’s what we really should do.”
Features of the “streetscaping” project includes the bus shelter that will be modeled on a historic trolley shelter that was at the location in the early 20th century, according to the proposal. Kiosks displaying the history of the trolley loop and the evolution of campus transit will also be put in. A bus monitor with GPS of the buses and arrival times, commissioned art, and a possibility of water bottle refill stations are a few of the other amenities.
The next step in the process of obtaining the money is for KU to submit their application to KDOT’s Transportation Alternatives Grant Application.