During the 2012 budget process, the KWA finance committee recommended budgeting an additional $25,000 for sidewalks with the intent that the new Executive Director (ED) would work with the City to get new sidewalks on one complete block. The KWA Board approved the sidewalk budget and asked the ED to accomplish this task.

The ED obtained two sidewalk inventories, one form the City Public Works Department and one from the MPO (Metropolitan Planning Organization). The inventories classified sidewalk conditions. KWA Sidewalk Program Chair Fred Pfieffer, and his wife Maria, personally walked all the sidewalks categorized as “not present, impassable and limited damage,” and prioritized five locations spread throughout the KWA’s boundaries. In the interim, the ED began conversations with Councilman Bernal explaining that KWA wanted to team with the City to get a complete block of sidewalks repaired. Bernal was interested in our concept, and in finding a way to have the City use smaller contractors to reduce City construction cost while boosting employment opportunities for small businesses.

Councilman Bernal and the ED looked at three locations. After their onsite visit, Bernal asked the ED to get three different bids for each location. He was working with City staff to find ways to reduce outsourced construction projects, and having bids from small contractors would help the City understand the variable costs of sidewalk repair projects. After multiple meetings, and follow-up emails, the decision was made to add sidewalks on the northern side of Eagleland from E. Guenther to S. St. Mary’s. KWA signed a contract with the City to donate $25,000 for this project. Construction was completed around the end of 2014. Two years in the making, but we finally have sidewalks installed where none existed before!
Sidewalks are the responsibility of the property owner per City Ordinance. Property owners in King William, residential and commercial, do not have to wait for a City project to get their sidewalks replaced. KWA’s Sidewalk Program reimburses approved work at $25 per linear foot, up to a maximum of $2,500, more if you have a corner lot. Take advantage of this program! There are often cost benefits when several neighbors do their sidewalks at the same time with the same concrete contractor. Don’t forget to contact Fred Pfeiffer before starting your project.

- Cherise Bell