With surveying nearly complete for the new multi-use pathway in Hatteras village, the public’s assistance is needed to help pave the way for funding the impending project.
The 3.75-mile pathway will stretch from the Hatteras ferry docks to the northern town borders, and will include a loop along Eagle Pass Road, making all areas along the route safer and more accessible.
Though the pathway has been in the works for years, the project took a big step forward in early May when a surveying operation was launched, which is the first phase of the overall construction.
The surveying phase of the project maps the exact layout of the future path, and not only serves as a concrete guideline for the ensuing construction, but also helps organizers secure funding for the remainder of the project. Chairperson for the Hatteras Village Community Center District (HVCCD) Ricki Shepherd stated in an earlier interview that grants are actively being researched to help offset the overall cost of the project, which will come into clearer focus once the surveying phase is complete.
One of the best options for securing funds is the USDOT Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development, or BUILD Transportation Discretionary Grant program, which provides funding for projects that have a significant local or regional impact. Roughly $900 million in discretionary grant funding is available this year for projects across the country, however, the grant program is highly competitive due to its national scale.
As such, the local community is encouraged to write letters in support of the Hatteras village multi-use pathway to help increase the project’s chances of receiving funds from the BUILD grant program.
“Part of the narrative of the application [for the BUILD grant] is letters from the community supporting the project,” stated HVCCD Trustee Dennis Robinson. “…If we receive a grant, construction could begin next spring. Keep your fingers crossed and write those letters!”
Letter writers are encouraged to use their business or personal letterhead whenever possible, and to spell out key points about why a multi-use pathway is an essential project for the village. Some suggestions on points to include are:
- Improved safety in keeping walkers, joggers and cyclists off busy roads
- Promoting better health by having an off-the-road pathway
- Connecting points of interest, such as the historic Weather Bureau Building, the waterfront, and businesses along the pathway
- Better access to the ferry docks, and the new passenger ferry to Ocracoke
- Better access to the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, the Hatteras Village Civic Center, the Hatteras Village Community Building and the Community Park on Eagle Pass Road
- Enhanced opportunities for historical and environmental interpretation
Letter writers should include their address in the correspondence, and should direct the letter to the attention of Secretary Elaine L. Chao, U.S. Department of Transportation.
Finished letters can be mailed to P.O. Box 594, Hatteras, NC 27943, or can be dropped off at the Lee Robinson General Store or Midgett Realty in Hatteras village.
The letters will need to be included in the grant application packet, so please do not mail letters separately.
The due date to submit a letter is July 1, 2019.