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Batavia to apply for CDBG funds for river corridor study

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT

BATAVIA – On Monday, aldermen approved city staff applying to Kane County for a share of its Community Development Block Grant funds instead of applying for Riverboat funds to do a study of the Fox River corridor.

Community Development Director Scott Buening said the study is necessary as the corridor is in the heart of the Batavia community.

Last year, the city applied for a Riverboat grant for the same study, but did not receive funds due to significant competition for the grants.

The study is estimated to cost $130,000.

The city would allocate $30,000 for in-house services, such as engineering and planning, $50,000 would be from community development funds and the remaining $50,000 would probably come from tax increment finance funds, 7th Ward Alderman David Brown said.

“We’re looking at a downtown corridor and riverfront [that] most importantly serves … everyone,” Brown said. “It serves the entire town. It serves businesses, it serves the community in general. And there’s a lot that needs to be looked at.”

Brown said now that invasive species have been removed from the river, it is more visible to those walking by.

The Batavia Park District also will be an applicant for the grant, as it owns a significant part of the frontage.

City Administrator Bill McGrath said the river is impacted by soil erosion that also affects the city’s utilities, such as its sanitary sewer lines.

The deadline to apply for the community development block grant funds is today, but the county said it would accept Batavia’s application if the city council approved it, officials said.

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