Wednesday, August 5, 2009

SWFBUD Pleased That Hillsborough County Commission Votes To Apply For Friendship Trail Repair Money

Good news for the Friendship TrailBridge. The Hillsborough County Commission voted 5-2 to partner with Pinellas County to apply for federal transportation grant money to fix the TrailBridge, which has been closed since last November.

I represented SWFBUD and spoke at the public comment period of the commission meeting this morning to voice our support for applying for the "TIGER" transportation money to fix the deteriorated sections of the Old Gandy Bridge, which now serves as the Friendship Trail, connecting St. Pete and Tampa.

Commission members Rose Ferlita and Mark Sharpe led the charge to apply for the grant, and were joined by Ken Hagan, Kevin Beckner and Kevin White. Commissioners Jim Norman and Al Higginbotham voted against.

The application will be for $20 million -- $15 million for the bridge trail work and $5 million for trail systems leading to the old Gandy Bridge.

The application has to be in by Sept. 15 and Pinellas and Hillsborough counties should find out whether they got the grant within a month after that.

By the way, during the commssion meeting, audience members got a laugh when window cleaners came rappelling down the side of the county center building right in the middle of the meeting.

One of the TV news guys turned his video camera to the window cleaner from the county commission.

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