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City awarded $500,000 INDOT grant

BY Paige Conley - pconley@perutribune.com

Peru's roads are expected to get an upgrade next spring with the help of the Community Crossings Grant in which the Indiana Department of Transportation awarded the city $500,000.

The Community Crossings Matching Grant Program, a partnership between INDOT and Hoosier communities, is meant to assist Indiana cities, towns and counties in making improvements to local roads and bridges, according to an INDOT press release.

“Since 2016, the state has awarded $400 million in state funds to support local road and bridge projects around the state,” stated information from the release.

With Peru looking to complete a paving project in 2019, the project falls under the grant's guidelines for eligibility which include road resurfacing and preservation, bridge rehabilitation or replacement and road construction with Americans with Disabilities Act compliance in connection with a road project.

“Peru's project includes paving for multiple streets throughout the city that are in need of repair, as well as the Parkview Heights area of the city,” wrote City of Peru Mayor Gabriel Greer's assistant Ashley Lowe.

According to Lowe, projects submitted to INDOT for funding were evaluated on need, traffic volume, local support and so on and due to Peru's size the city was awarded a 50/50 matching grant for the project.

“Counties with a population of greater than 50,000 people will receive funds using a 50/50 match,” said the INDOT release.

As for a starting date, all INDOT Community Crossing contracts must be completed by Spring of 2019 and full program funding will be awarded to all recipient communities by May 2019, so projects can begin shortly after.

The program issues two calls for projects a year including one in January and one in July, at which time communities can apply, however, communities who apply must have an approved asset management plan and provide a match for their project, according to the INDOT release.

Likewise, there is a cap of $1 million per calender year starting in 2019 for local units of government. As for the remaining funds left over after the call for projects has ended, that money will be carried over to the next call.

“Remaining funds will not revert to the general fund, or be reallocated for any other purpose,” said the release.

For those interested in learning more about the Community Crossings Matching Grant Program, they can visit INDOT's website for further details.