City has received $400,000 federal grant for construction
On Thursday, Oct 26, members of the public are invited to attend an informational meeting about the City of Sarasota’s plans to connect bicyclists, pedestrians and others from The Legacy Trail’s termination at Payne Park to downtown Sarasota and other points west, city staff has announced.
The meeting will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the SRQ Media Studio in the City Hall Annex, which stands at 1565 First St. in downtown Sarasota, a news release says.
The project is designed to increase connectivity and safety for users who want to travel from The Legacy Trail to downtown Sarasota, and for those who wish to proceed on to St. Armands Circle and Lido Key, the release adds.
A 14-foot-wide Multi-Use Recreational Trail (MURT) will be constructed as the connector from south Payne Park to The Legacy Trail/School Avenue junction, the release notes. That will enable the MURT to tie into protected bike lanes on the Ringling Trail in downtown Sarasota “and offer shorter travel distances for those bicycling, walking or using mobility assistance devices,” the release adds.
The project will include amenities such as a shade shelter, a drinking fountain, benches, tables, a bike rack, lighting, landscaping and informational signage.
The meeting will be conducted with an open house format, which will include a looping video presentation played at 5 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m., the release says. Attendees also will have the opportunity to review diagrams and talk with the project team.
Meeting materials will be posted by Monday, Oct. 23, on the project website www.Sarasotafl.gov/LegacyTrailPaynePark, the release notes.
Comments about the project may be submitted four ways, the release points out:
- In person during the Oct. 26 meeting.
- Via email to Project Manager Corinne Arriaga at Corinne.Arriaga@sarasotafl.gov
- Telephone — 941-263-6362.
- Mail sent to Corinne Arriaga, 1761 12thSt., Sarasota, FL 34236.
Comments must be submitted by Nov. 6 to be included in the public record, the release points out.
In the latter part of August, Mayor Kyle Battie announced that the city was awarded a $400,000 federal grant to construct the MURT. The city is matching that with $375,000, to build The Legacy Trail-Payne Park connector, he wrote in the Aug. 18 city newsletter.
The city website explains that city staff applied for the grant funding through the Recreational Trails Program, which the Federal Highway Administration administers at the federal level, while the Florida Department of Environmental Protection handles the program at the state level for Florida.
During the Sarasota City Commission’s regular meeting on July 3, the board members unanimously approved the execution of the grant agreement. The matching funds, materials in the agenda packet explained, will come out of Multi-Modal Transportation Impact Fees revenue that the city receives.
The Agenda Request Form for that July 3 item further noted that the MURT’s limits will be from The Legacy Trail junction at School Avenue to Alderman Street/South Payne Parkway and East Avenue.
Construction is anticipated to begin in late 2024, the news release says.