Sterling moves ahead with $315,000 pedestrian access near downtown

STERLING — Sterling is moving ahead with a portion of the Complete Streets project, with a $315,000 grant to do some of the work.

The goal is to improve pedestrian access from the elderly housing at Sholan Terrace to the center of town.

According to information from engineer Eileen Gunn, of Fuss & O’Neill Inc., and DPW Director Ryan Mouradian, the project includes new 5-foot sidewalks on the north side of Bird Street, a crossing at Maple Street and replacing sidewalks and ramps on the east side of Maple Street to Main Street.

This accessibility will tie into the downtown renovation project the town has been working on for years.

The work is part of the complete Streets program approved by the town. Fuss & O’Neill has been working with the Montachusett Regional Planning Commission to develop the plan and provide engineering estimates for construction.

“The grant covers construction, and the town is required to pay for design,” Gunn wrote in an update to Mouradian.

“The next step is to work with an architect,” Select Board member John Kilcoyne said at the March 2 meeting.

In other grant news discussed at the Select Board meeting, the board voted to sign a contract with the DCR for erosion control on Swett Hill Road and improvements at the town beach.

Town voters approved money last year for the engineering study.

Select Board Chair Maureen Cranson said that once work starts, “more grant money for it is more likely.”

The board authorized Cranson to sign the contract.

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