Friday, October 7, 2011

"Some things are worth celebrating"

"Some things are worth celebrating, and this is one of them" said Alpine Township Supervisor Alex Arends Friday morning at a brief ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony of the new sidewalks that were constructed this year on Alpenhorn and Chasseral.  Present at the ceremony was representation from Alpine Township, York Creek and Alpine Slopes Apartments, Progressive Engineering and the Kent County Community Development Department.
2,400 lineal feet of sidewalk was completed on Alpenhorn Drive and Chasseral Drive for a total cost of $152,000, of which $132,000 were community development  moneys that were made availlable to theTownship after a previous project fell through.  The most difficult and expensive segment was crossing York Creek.  Previously, residents walked in the street between traffic and the guardrail.  Now residents can walk on a sidewalk safely behind the guardrail.
According to the 2010 Census, just over 4,000 residents live along the sidewalk route and 5,000 people live in the vicinity overall. 
There are 5 bus stops along Alpenhorn from Alpine Avenue to Lamoreaux Drive and on a weekday there are on average 100 people getting on and off the bus.  On the weekends it averages 200 people a day.  At the Township's request, the Rapid has added one bus shelter and 3 benches at the stops over the last two years.  The 2011 sidewalk project included concrete bases for the 3 bus stop benches it passed and wide concrete aprons to the street so that passengers do not have to walk or wheel through grass to get to the bus. 
Land and Company (owner York Creek Apartments) capitalized on the Township's sidewalk investment and completed the short remaining sidewalk segment on Alpenhorn Drive themselves this summer.
The completed sidewalks on Alpenhorn and Chasseral Drives links the York Creek and Alpine Slopes Apartments complexes together along with the single family home developments to the east. 
During the summer of 2010 the Township utilized $76,000 of CDBG funding to construct 1,200 lineal feet of sidewalk along York Creek Drive and Alpine Avenue.
At the ceremony, Supervisor Arends had high praise for all the parties involved to make this project come to fruition.  First were the property owners for York Creek and Alpine Slopes Apartments, for granting the easements and their willingness to maintain the sidewalks.  He also praised Linda Likely and the staff of Kent County Community Development for their cooperation and for allowing Alpine Township to use funds that some thought they were ineligible for.  Also thanked was Conrad Venema with the RAPID Transit Authority for his cooperation in moving some of the bus stops and adding benches.  Rapid Engineering and their engineer Mike Oezer were praised for their work, in particularly where it involved construction by the creek.  Also recognized was the contractor, DeYoung Concrete, but the biggest recognition went to Alpine Township Planner Sue Thomas for all her efforts in completing this project.

Sue Thomas, Alpine Township Planner, and Alex Arends, Supervisor, addressing the participants

It was the perfect Friday morning for a ceremony

Alpine Township Planner Sue Thomas cutting the ribbon

Carrie Irwin and Linda Likely, Kent County Community Development, with Sue Thomas and Alex Arends, Alpine Township

Part of the 3/4 mile of sidewalk

Everybody enjoyed Alpine Township Apple cider and fresh Alpine Township Donuts

Supervisor Alex Arends and Community Development's Carrie Irwin talking to a York Creek Condominium resident who is an outspoken proponent of the sidewalk

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