Improving eastern end

Published 9:48 am Tuesday, June 9, 2015

CHESAPEAKE — Improving the aesthetics of specific neighborhoods in the eastern end is the focus of an application for a $300,000 federal grant.

Last week economic development leaders met with community members in the Chesapeake area to brainstorm on what would improve the neighborhoods between Symmes and Indian Guyan creeks.

Now the public will have a chance to give their input on the proposed projects at a hearing at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 18, at the Lawrence County Commission chambers.

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“It was an information-gathering type of thing,” said Ralph Kline, assistant executive director of the Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Organization. “We heard about improving the community center and continue to take down vacant dilapidated housing.”

Projects could be funded under the Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy Areas program.

“They want a long-term reinvestment in a targeted area,” Kline said.

Another project could be developing a pedestrian and bike trail system in the Chesapeake-Proctorville area linked to the riverfront and Huntington, West Virginia trails.

“One of the newer ideas worthy to investigate is landscaping with visual screening on the less desirable mixed industrial and residential areas,” Kline said.

Rows of evergreens could be planted in front of these areas to block their view from the roadway.

“It would be very inexpensive and have a lot of impact,” he said. “There are a couple of sections we’ve identified — the industrial areas. It is a much softer look and also deadens the sound.”

The Lawrence County Commissioners must give their approval to seeking funding for these projects. Administrating the grant will be done by the CAO.