Danbury is applying for a Federal Highway Administration Grant to improve accessibility. Mayor Mark Boughton says the grant is mainly focused on handicap accessibility. The City was audited by the federal government, which made several recommendations. The $1.4 million covers 80-percent of the anticipated costs, with the City needing to foot the remaining 20-percent of the tab.
The program is aimed at improving mobility of school children, the elderly and people with physical challenges. The money would go to improving sidewalks along Park Avenue near the elementary school and Golden Hill Road and Beckerly Street for access to the High School. Improvement of pedestrian facilities for the elderly at Danbury Commons, Kimberly Place, Wooster Manor, Crosby Manor, Danbury Tower, Putnam Tower and Bishop Curtis Home would also be funded.
The grant would also cover installations to help safe pedestrian mobility to and from the train station. It's about 1 mile of sidewalks and 70 audible pedestrian push buttons at 13 crossing signals.
Councilman Duane Perkins asked if Deer Hill Avenue could be included in the grant application because of sidewalks, light and traffic safety issues. Boughton agreed that there is an issue and a need in that area, but isn't sure if it's an exact fit for the grant requirements.