Lawton City Councilman proposing sidewalk project

Lawton City Councilman proposing sidewalk project

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) -A Lawton City Councilman is pushing for construction of a sidewalk stretching about half-a-mile along one of the busier streets on the city's east side.

If the city council approves the proposal tomorrow night, one sidewalk would run on the south side of Gore from the intersection at SE Flower Mound and Gore Boulevard to the traffic light at the entrance to the Apache Casino. Another sidewalk would be installed on the North side of Gore running from Braum's to the end of the strip center on Gore

Walking on the grass next to a dangerous road is the only way for the community to get to local businesses or restaurants nearby. City Councilman Jay Burk says he wants a change. Those at the Veterans Center and people with disabilities that live just next door, don't have a safe pathway they can take on their own.

"We don't want people with motorize scooters or people in wheelchairs or people with strollers...we don't want them walking in the streets. Somebody's going to get hurt,
said Burk.

Burke says his proposal helps connect the sidewalks that were previously there to the ones he wants to build. That way residents and children walking home from school could go all the way from Southeast Flower Mound up to the point of the Urgent care center on Gore. Burk says he chose this specific area because of the amount of people he's seen using the sidewalks. He says they get to a dead end, turn around and go back because they didn't want to go in the grass near the road.

"30 or 40 people up and down that sidewalk every single day, if not more. There are times I've seen them with their dogs with their kids, strollers, bicycles. I've seen it all. So we need to make it to where everyone can use these sidewalks, said Burk.

Through the fund that voters approved with 2015 CIP program, the city can cover about $84,000 of the $130,000 the project costs. Burk has plans to fill the gap by asking for donations through Lawton Enhancement Trust.

"My goal is to help raise private funds and citizens that want to put a monument of some sort into that concrete. Lawton Enhancement will come up with some sort of monument that will go into the concrete and it can be there forever, said Burk.

Burk says this is just one of many sidewalk projects he hopes to get approved to help make the City of Lawton a safer place.

"We have so many places not just in East Lawton, but Lawton in general that need sidewalks and have accessibility issues. We want to look at all those and start coming up with a plan in every location in Lawton that we can do,
said Burk.

Copyright 2016 KSWO. All rights reserved.