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Marlow sidewalk project nearly complete

MARLOW, Okla._ After months of orange cones and roped-off walkways, downtown Marlow will have something to be proud of, come spring.

The city hopes to wrap up its $1.2 million sidewalk project within the next few months. Complete with new trees and lampposts, the upgrades come after the sidewalks fell into disrepair after decades of wear and tear.

People we talked to today said they did have concerns about how the final product would affect their storefronts. One owner said she wasn't thrilled about having a tree outside her door in fear of being bombarded by birds, but most agree that the upgrade will not only make downtown easy on the eyes, but flourishing with more foot traffic.

"It's a win-win situation, once you live through it, it's good," said business owner Leah Greene.

Greene says sidewalk construction over the past ten months has been a little maddening. But as owner of the Marlow Mercantile for eighteen years, fixing the sidewalks was definitely much-needed.

"I think it'll help with just people driving through sightseeing they might say something like 'well this is a neat little town, we might need to stop here and look," she said.

That's been the goal for city administrator Jason McPherson and the rest of Marlow for months. The city was able to fund construction after combining capital improvement funds with a grant from the Oklahoma Department of Transportation in 2009 worth over $500,000. Since then, things have come along slowly but surely.

"ODOT has patiently waited on us to get it going, and now the people of Marlow have patiently waited on us to finish. So it's been kind of a patient process," said McPherson.

Patience that McPherson says has been especially appreciated this winter.

"The weather has slowed us up so much. You just can't pour concrete when it's freezing," he said.

Despite sidewalk structuring being a pain temporarily, McPherson hopes the end product speaks worlds about the city of Marlow.

"Whether you're in this business or not, you notice it. And that's a town that takes care of their residents, takes care of their own business, and wants you to be a part of it," said McPherson.

For Leah Greene, the bigger picture says it all.

"With our new City Hall, our new library and our new grade school ... we're rockin' over here at Marlow," she said.

Over 500 yards of concrete will have been laid when it's all said and done. One interesting note: during the demolition of the old pavement, Greene tells 7News several artifacts from Marlow's yesteryears were found ... like horseshoes, coins and even rings used to tie up carriages back in the day.

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