Posted by Trina Edwards - email
FLORENCE, KY (FOX19) - Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear visited Northern Kentucky Friday, attending two different events.
Gov. Beshear first attended a law enforcement memorial ceremony at the south end of the Roebling Suspension Bridge in Covington. The ceremony honored 35 Northern Kentucky Peace Officers who have given their lives in the line of duty.
"There is much in the role of a law enforcement officer that changes over the years," Gov. Beshear said, echoing the words on the Northern Kentucky Police Memorial. "Two factors remain constant: A dedication to service, and a willingness to make whatever sacrifices are necessary."
Gov. Beshear then attended the official groundbreaking ceremony at for the reconstruction of Mall Road in Florence.
The project will bring a modern look to the 1.5 mile-long Mall Road retail district and will provide a new road; curb and gutter; storm water improvements; landscaped medians in the middle of the road; new street lights, sidewalks; bus pull-offs; roadside landscaping; and a new traffic signal at the intersection of Plaza Boulevard and the south entrance to the Florence Mall (main Cinema DeLux entrance from Mall Road).
"This project is a result of many years of hard work and extensive advocacy efforts. We are appreciative Governor Beshear and his administration recognized the economic significance of our retail corridor and provided the funding necessary to ensure it remains vibrant for years to come," said Florence Mayor Diane Whalen.
Phase I work, from KY 18 to the I-75 exit ramp, is scheduled to begin before Memorial Day and be completed by November 2010. Phase II from the I-75 exit ramp to U.S. 42 will be completed by November 2011.
"With its close proximity to Interstates 71 and 75, Mall Road is one of the best-known and most visible retail districts in Kentucky, and it is an economic mainstay of Northern Kentucky in particular," Gov. Beshear said. "This is an investment in an area that already accounts for more than 3,400 employees and nearly $115 million in employee wages."
The project, for which the state has authorized $13 million in state bond funds, is being administered by the city of Florence under an agreement with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet.
"This is a great development for Boone County and Florence as it will encourage business in these tough economic times," said Sen. John Schickel, of Union. "These investments in infrastructure will cultivate economic growth in our region from which future generations will benefit."