Construction started this week on a project to turn a beat up, outdated main street in downtown Farmington into a boulevard streetscape of greenery, decorative lighting and stamped walkways.
The $1.1-million Grove Street Reconstruction Project will also add parking to downtown and make over a tired strip retail center as well as connect it to a major pedestrian crosswalk that will lead to another shopping center.
Water mains will also be replaced and a plaza space with seating will be part of the new downtown layout.
The goal of city officials and the Downtown Development Authority is to make downtown more attractive, walkable, and busy as well as match it to a streetscape already redone. The plans call for turning a swath of pavement into a boulevard separated by a center island with angled parking along parts of it.
Mayor Tom Buck says the project is as much about attracting families to downtown as it is attracting small businesses and boosting the local economy.
The project will completely remove and replace Grove Street from Grand River to Main Street. The work was delayed in 2009 due to the costs. It is expected to be completed in two phases over a 10-week period and ready to use sometime in July.
Farmington is a Main Street Oakland County community.
Writer: Kim North Shine
Source: Annette Knowles, executive director, Farmington Downtown Development Authority