Year-long construction project for sewer and trail begins today

Huntington city officials turn shovels of dirt at Elmwood Park during a groundbreaking ceremony on Wednesday, May 15, for the Frederick Street interceptor sewer and recreational trail project.
Huntington city officials turn shovels of dirt at Elmwood Park during a groundbreaking ceremony on Wednesday, May 15, for the Frederick Street interceptor sewer and recreational trail project. Photo by Cindy Klepper.

The ceremonial groundbreaking was held on May 15, but the real work gets underway today, May 20.

Construction of the new sewer and a recreational trail - beginning on Frederick Street, just west of Hasty Street and winding its way to Jefferson Street - is likely to continue for a while.

"We're hoping a year," says Charlie Dunigan, of Dunigan Bros. in Jackson, MI, who is serving as project manager.
Once it's completed, the new sewer lines will help keep raw sewage from flowing into area streams and rivers.

The trail - an eight-foot-wide asphalt sidewalk - will be one segment of a walking and bicycling path that Huntington Mayor Brooks Fetters hopes will eventually extend from the Forks of the Wabash Historic Park to the Huntington PAL Club, and beyond.

Dunigan says the entire length of the project won't be under construction at once. Crews will work on one segment and repave it before moving on to the next segment.

The project will begin on William Street near Elmwood Park, run east along William Street to Clark Street, continue north on Clark Street, move east on Frederick Street and go along Henry Street and through the Riverfront Plaza parking lot before ending at Jefferson Street.

The walking path will be constructed at the same time as the sewer line, Fetters says, and will generally be located alongside the streets.

Fetters says he's "dusted off" a 2007 master plan for the city that calls for a walking path throughout the community.

"It would mainly follow the Erie (Railroad) corridor and the Little River," he says.

Fetters says the walking paths will contribute to quality of life in the city by increasing recreational opportunities, and he believes they will be used.

"If you go out to the Forks, there's people on it (the trail) all the time," he says.

Complete caption: Huntington city officials turn shovels of dirt at Elmwood Park during a groundbreaking ceremony on Wednesday, May 15, for the Frederick Street interceptor sewer and recreational trail project. From left are Anthony Goodnight, director of public works and engineering services; Art Ehinger, technical services consultant with the city engineer’s office; Kirk Strass, superintendent of the Huntington Water Pollution Control Department; Mayor Brooks Fetters; and Huntington Common Council members Jack Slusser and Joe Blomeke.