Houston improves sidewalks

 Houston Mayor Stacey Parker, on left, watches 4-D Construction employees install new water meters and repair the sidewalk in front of City Hall last week. The work is is one of the last projects in the city's $300,000 ARC downtown renovation grant. (Floyd Ingram / Buy at photos.chickasawjournal.com)


Houston Mayor Stacey Parker, on left, watches 4-D Construction employees install new water meters and repair the sidewalk in front of City Hall last week. The work is is one of the last projects in the city’s $300,000 ARC downtown renovation grant. (Floyd Ingram / Buy at photos.chickasawjournal.com)

HOUSTON – Water meter work has led the city to improve the appearance of sidewalks at one of the prettiest places in downtown Houston. The city embarked on a massive $300,000 upgrade or pipes, valves and fire hydrants in downtown Houston as part of a Appalachian Regional Commission grant almost two years ago and work on the water meters on the south side of the Square have prompted the city to also repair sidewalks fronting City Hall and the Master Gardener Mini Park. “We spent over a year working on the pipes and infrastructure downtown and this is one of the last little projects we wanted to do as we wrap up that grant,” said Houston Mayor Stacey Parker. “This was a little something we wanted them to do while they were under the hood.” Parker said the initial design called for several water meters to be upgraded on the south side of the square. He added is just made sense to couple that work with an upgrade of the sidewalks. A new fire hydrant will also be installed. The city hired 4-D Construction out of Louisville to do the work. Backhoes and workers began digging up the street and sidewalk last week. Weather permitting, they hope to be finished in two weeks. “They are basically moving the meters back out from under the road,” said Ricko Nichols, Houston Street Department Superintendent. “This is Highway 8 through Houston and we also had to get state clearance to do this work.” Nichols said the work will change the appearance of the sidewalk fronting City Hall and the mini park and also make them safer. Parker said the mini park has become a popular spot for community events and even hosted a number of weddings this spring. “This is a very visible portion of our city and it will hopefully give a good first impression to anyone visiting city hall,” said Parker. “We’ve done a lot to downtown in paving our streets, doing the infrastructure work and we’ve had some businesses improve their property, too. This is just another little move in that direction.”

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