Another mural and more work on Riverside Park on the way for Fort Kent

6 July 2012

FORT KENT–The Maine State Department of Economic and Community Development has awarded the town of Fort Kent an approximately $150,000 Community Development Block Grant toward a new entrance to Riverside Park.

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Fort Kent is the recipient of several grant awards this year, said Fort Kent Town Manager Don Guimond.

The Riverside Park entrance project will include a vehicular entrance, a separate pedestrian entrance, pedestrian trails, lights, and signage.

Guimond said the project is essentially waiting for the “good to go” signal from the funding agency, which the town should receive within two to three weeks. In the meantime, the town is preparing cost estimates so the project will be ready to go when it is finalized.

Guimond said he anticipates matching funds for this project to be provided through approximately $120,000 of Tax Increment Financing funding for East Main Street, municipal in-kind services totaling approximately $30,000, Project Canopy funds totaling approximately $8,000, and a $10,000 Jack Gibson foundation grant, which the town plans to use to create another mural depicting the ferry crossing located near the Park.

There were two to three ferry crossings located in Fort Kent, said Guimond.  The town has pictures of the crossings. Lise Pelletier at the University of Maine at Fort Kent Acadian Archives will provide research to determine which one of the three scenes is depicting a ferry crossing at the appropriate location.

“Hopefully, we will be historically accurate in which one we are picturing there,” said Guimond.

ASI, Inc., the Fort Kent office of ASI, Inc., is donating some property to the project as well, he said.

The town already owns lighting fixtures and benches that they can use as part of the Riverside Park entrance.

“It will create a nice connection between the park and Main Street,” said Guimond.

In reference to the work that contractors have completed in Riverside Park over the last five to ten years and the work they are currently performing there, he said, “The park is taking on more of a finished look. Things are coming together.”

The CDBG program is also providing monies for assistance with Todd’s Custom Contracting, a small start-up business that will provide spray foam insulation for local buildings. The town will also be submitting an application for a CDBG grant to help a Riverview Homes to expand their business.

The Maine Municipal Association has awarded the town a $2000 grant through their Safety Enhancement Program to provide ergonomically correct fixtures in one of the offices in the Town Office building. Guimond said this is the third one the MMA has provided for the purpose of improving ergonomics for office employees. After receiving two similar grant awards, the town submitted two additional applications earlier this spring for the same thing. MMA awarded one.