West Monroe Mayor Staci Mitchell

The city of West Monroe is pursuing grant funding to rehabilitate two streets near Ike Hamilton Expo Center and a replace an aging sewer lift station that often floods during heavy rain storms.

The possibility of landing the grant funding and more were discussed Tuesday night at the West Monroe Board of Aldermen’s regular meeting.

Aldermen also authorized the city to engage S.E. Huey Co., an engineering firm, to complete some $110,000 in “engineering and related services” for the commercial development of the former Trenton Street Golf Course, now known as Highland Park. Last week, city officials cut a ribbon to officially kick off some $900,000 worth of infrastructure improvements to the park, which is partly being funded with a $714,000 grant from Delta Regional Authority.

S.E. Huey’s role in the matter will focus on water, sewer and road infrastructure improvements.

The city is applying for a roughly $705,000 grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to rebuild Constitution Avenue and Short Constitution Drive near the Ike. Redoing the two streets is part a larger effort to improve the commercial park where the Ike is located, including a large-scale project to improve drainage near Interstate 20.

Mayor Staci Mitchell said rehabilitating Constitution Avenue and Short Constitution Drive were abundantly necessary.

“With the opening of Surge Entertainment Center in November, traffic is going to pick up in that area,” Mitchell said.

The sewer lift station the city would like to replace is located off Drago Street, near Black Bayou canal. The city is applying for a $2.148 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to pay for the lion’s share of the cost of the project. The city would be required to put some $537,000 toward the project as well.

On another front, the Board of Aldermen signed off on the city spending $95,000 to acquire property at the corner of Trenton Street and Wood Street from Tyner-Petrus Co. Inc. The city will utilize the property as a green space.

Aldermen also agreed to rezone property located at 117 Claiborne St. and 119 Claiborne St. from a multi-family residential district (R-2) to a general business district (B-3). K&S Real Estate Holdings LLC and Kimberly Carl Quarles et al were the applicants. They were represented by Monroe attorney Ben Marshall. The rezoned property will be used for parking.

Meanwhile, aldermen denied a request to rezone property off Arkansas Road for possibly a commercial development in light of objections from area residents.

In law enforcement matters, the Board of Aldermen approved an ordinance to ratify an agreement for the police department to receive a $130,000 grant from Louisiana Highway Safety Commission. Police chief Jeff Terrell said the West Monroe Police Department received the largest grant of any police department in northeastern Louisiana.

In other business, the Board of Aldermen condemned property at 115 Reagan St.

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