Wednesday, March 01, 2000

Florence street study delayed

Engineers still gathering data

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        ERLANGER — Florence residents must wait until May to hear a consultant's recommendation for where a street connecting Hopeful Church and Mall roads should go.

        Florence City Coordinator Jeff Koenig updated officials on the progress of a study by GRW Engineers Inc. at a joint meeting of the City Council and fiscal court Tuesday night at the Airport Holiday Inn.

        City officials had scheduled April 10 as a tentative meeting date for discussing various options, but the firm is still collecting traffic counts and projections.

        “A delay doesn't mean a sidestep,” said Florence Mayor Diane Ewing Whalen. “It's simply more complete and accurate information gathering.”

        The firm is developing a study that will show the bene fits and drawbacks of each of the five alignments of the new road. City officials say the connector road would improve traffic flow on the west side of Florence with particular focus on the Ky. 18 and U.S. 42 intersections with Mall and Hopeful Church roads.

        City officials say it would also provide better community access to and from areas along Mall Road. Residents say they do not want the traffic and noise.

        In other discussion, the groups talked about the new county and circuit clerk offices that should be ready at the Florence government center by July. After a year of planning, both have signed off on a five-year lease that will bring county residents city services.

        Design plans are under way that will transform a lower-level, unfinished room of the center on Ewing Boulevard to a second office for county and circuit clerks.

        People will be able to renew their driver's licenses and vehicle plates. The paperwork with the transfer of a vehicle, licensing a new one or renewing registration can take place in Florence, too.

        Marriage licenses, deeds to property and voter registration will continue to be handled in Burlington.

        “The county clerk estimates that within a year they'll do 60 percent of their business in certain categories in Florence,” said Deputy County Administrator John Stanton.

        Fiscal court and City Council members also discussed their joint efforts to reduce airport noise in Boone County. A public hearing on the airport's noise abatement plan is scheduled 5:30 p.m. March 8 at Stephens Elementary School.


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