Tonawanda News — Mayor Patrick Mang announced a project to revitalize Elmwood Avenue Tuesday night during his annual State of the Village address.
“Elmwood Avenue can go ignored,” he said at the Kenmore Merchants Association event, which was held at Amigo’s Restaurant on Kenmore Avenue. “I’ve contacted a landscape architect at Wendel to improve it and help out the businesses there.”
The project would include adding green space, limited sidewalk reconstruction and improving right of ways.
“It would be a three to four year project, and the hope is that the state and county would buy in to provide more funding,” he said.
The project would also help with storm water run off, aiding in the village’s consent order with the state Department of Environmental Conservation.
Mang also noted other ongoing infrastructure improvements, including the state Department of Transportation’s plan to repave Delaware Avenue in the summer. Repaving on Kenmore Avenue will also continue in the spring.
“The section between Elmwood and Military is not part of that plan as of right now, but we are going to push for that.”
The village will have to renegotiate many of its contracts in 2014. Mang noted that the rising cost of healthcare, and new restrictions brought on by the Affordable Care Act, will constitute a challenge in the process.
“We are hoping we will be able to negotiate a deal that is fair for the employees and the taxpayers,” Mang said.
The mayor also pointed out changes and achievements that took place in 2014. In the fire department, which has the fastest response rate in Erie County, the village is saving money with the reduction of a full-time drive position and the addition of part-time employees.
The police department has eliminated the assistant chief position and added a new captain, Mang said, a move that has saved the village more funds.