By Mitchell Kirk Pharos-Tribune
---- — A new sidewalk was recently finished on North Third Street/Ind. 17 in Logansport, allowing pedestrians to avoid what a city official called “a dangerous situation” by providing a pathway for several facilities in the area that were once only accessible by walking on the curb or the street itself.
The approximately 400-foot stretch of sidewalk was put in on a part of the street known as College Hill, named after the buildings nearby that housed Smithson College and later Michael’s College. Much of the former campus burned down 1896.
For people traveling on foot to Dykeman Park Golf Course, Columbia Elementary School and a gas station in the area, the only place to walk was the side of the street or the street itself.
“People were having to walk on the highway and we had a very dangerous situation,” said Logansport Public Works Superintendent Dan Williams.
Williams went on to say the project, which began last year, was completed at a cost of about $12,000. He added because the street department was able to do a lot of the prep work, it ended up costing the city about 35 percent less had it contracted out the entire job.
The ground flanking the sidewalk has been seeded and straw has been strewn over it to prevent erosion, Williams said.
A 40- to 50-foot gap remains between the south end of the new sidewalk and an existing sidewalk, which Williams said will be filled in later this month or early in October.
Larry Sedam lives off of North Third Street near the hill. He praised the initiative, but expressed a desire for more improvements to be made toward that part of town.
“It seems like all of our tax dollars go to the east side,” he said. “Nothing really gets taken care of out here. It’s nice that they did that, but it took them long enough.”
Sedam went on to say he notices a lot of people jogging and running in the area.
“Any improvement is going to be a good thing,” he said. “It will be a good walkway for people doing exercising. It was really needed.”
Elizabeth Loposser, principal of Columbia Elementary School, commended the decision to put in the new pathway.
“We think it’s a great addition to the neighborhood,” she said. “We’re very happy it was able to be put in and we think it will be great for our families.”
A stone stairway ascends the hill that once provided a path to the former colleges. Williams said about a dozen steps had to be removed in order to allow for work on the sidewalk, but that many steps remain on into the treeline on the top of the hill.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or email@example.com.