City officials wrapped up a busy construction season this year, completing three projects›intended to offer recreational opportunities or improve safety.
All the initiatives circle back to Huron’s $9 million master plan — a decade-long blueprint aimed at luring businesses while also persuading people to stay and move into Huron.
The plan also calls for linking several city landmarks, parks and neighborhoods, with an emphasis on highlighting waterfront features.
Here’s a look at what Huron officials and area executives completed in 2013:
Lake Shore Electric Railway trail
• WHAT: 1.25-mile concrete path for bicyclists and walkers.
• WHERE: The trail runs parallel to U.S. 6, connecting Woodlands Intermediate School to Huron High School.
• COST: $240,000, with $200,000 coming from Huron Township’s budget and $40,000 from Huron’s budget.
• PURPOSE: To create and promote more recreational opportunities for residents and tourists. The city’s new master plan also calls for added pathways.
• WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: “Nothing beats a bike path. (Huron has) created a pathway to ensure the safety of the kids, adults and anyone else riding out there.” — Bob Langenfelder, local bicyclist
Rye Beach Road near Sawmill Parkway
• WHAT: Road-widening project to improve safety and accommodate traffic flow.
• WHERE: South of the Ohio 2 bridge, near the railroad crossing by Wendy’s.
• COST: $518,000, with $372,000 coming from grants and $146,000 coming from Huron’s budget.
• PURPOSE: Added vehicle traffic from International Automotive Components created a need for a wider road. In summer 2012, company executives agreed to increase its workforce by 24 percent — from 593 employees to 736 workers — and invest an extra $5 million into the community.
• WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: “The road (back then) isn’t wide enough or accommodating for tractor-trailers. It (had) been a challenge for employees to enter the plant.” — David Ladd, company spokesman
Pathway at former ConAgra site*
• WHAT: 600-foot walkway along the water’s edge.
• WHERE: Off Cleveland Road East, north of River Road.
• COST: $146,000, all coming from a $2 million grant to demolish ConAgra and clean up the surrounding area.
• PURPOSE: The former ConAgra site is a key focal point in Huron’s revitalization. City officials plan to market the pathway when promoting the 10 acres to commercial, business or residential entrepreneurs.
• WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: “This represents a major milestone in providing public access and dedicated recreational space for pedestrians and cyclists.” — Andy White, Huron city manager