- Associated Press - Sunday, June 3, 2018

DEVILS LAKE, N.D. (AP) - A number of Devils Lake merchants and residents are opposing a project to improve the city’s historic downtown.

The project includes improving the downtown area with sidewalk, curb and gutter replacement, and aesthetic additions. It also involves Americans with Disabilities Act compliance for accessibility ramps and parking.

The protest and comment period for the project has long passed. But the city has now asked the steering committee responsible for the project to reconvene to discuss how to modify the original plans to accommodate opponents’ concerns, the Devils Lake Journal reported .

Some are enthusiastic about the project, believing it will encourage more people to shop downtown and possibly relocate their businesses to the area.

But many oppose the plan because it means losing dozens of parking places in front of businesses. Nearly 50 spaces will be impacted if the project goes forward.

The steering committee has been meeting with those in opposition to the project and has gone through the plans to identify areas where parking spaces could be reclaimed. Committee members reduced the number of affected parking spaces from about 60 down to 49.

The state Transportation Department is providing funding for most of the project. The department recently moved the project’s bid opening from July to October, making the plan now part of the 2019 construction season.

The final plans for the project will wait until the city’s June 4 meeting for approval.


Information from: Devils Lake Journal, http://www.devilslakejournal.com

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