West Nine Mile streetscape continues downtown Ferndale’s make over

Ferndale is embarking on a major overhaul of West 9 Mile in downtown, part of a project that will take care of maintenance, such as updating underground infrastructure. The investment will also address a neglected part of downtown by creating a place that’s inviting, walkable, safe and ready for economic development.

The project, affectionately dubbed “How The West Was One,” is expected to run from April to September 2013 and give attention to the stretch of West 9 Mile from Planavon to Pinecrest.

The finished product will be a new road that’s narrowed from five lanes to three and that’s painted with bike friendly sharrows (sharing arrows). There will be wider sidewalks, a new water main, a streetscape with benches, trash and recycling containers, 60 trees and perennial beds and sidewalk and on-street bike corrals, new lighting and more crosswalks.

The $1.1 million construction project is a cooperative effort between the Ferndale Downtown Development Authority and the City of Ferndale.

The streetscape portion of the project was developed by the DDA and has been a work in progress for more than ten years. Last summer, the DDA won a Transportation Enhancement grant to cover nearly half of the cost.

In October, the Ferndale City Council voted to match the grant.

“This project, and the city’s investment in it, is critical to the improvement of a long-neglected section of our Downtown,” said Cristina Sheppard-Decius, executive director of the Ferndale DDA. “Private redevelopment follows public investment. The City Council’s commitment is exactly the kind of leadership that will kick start a great future for that end of town and all of Ferndale.”

Writer: Kim North Shine
Source: Chris Hughes, Ferndale Downtown Development Authority