PADUCAH — $10.4 million is on its way to Paducah through the Department of Transportation's B.U.I.L.D. grant program. Paducah city leaders held the news conference at city hall Wednesday after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell confirmed the funding. The city applied for the grant in July, aiming to make improvements to the city's riverfront area. Paducah Mayor Brandi Harless said these funds will be distributed to several planned projects.
"The entire riverfront, where the transient boat dock is now, will be developed fully," Harless said. "We will have bike rentals, we will have bus terminals, and we'll have walkways. We'll have a promenade for maybe a farmers market set up. We are looking forward to kind of developing that up further as we move ahead."
The city previously applied for the grant in 2018, but was not awarded any funding. Harless said, for this year's application, they made some changes that led to getting the grant.
"Before, we had applied for more park-like activities. This time, we applied for more transportation-like activities. There's also some intersection improvements in there around the convention center area, and the 3rd and 4th Street loop," Harless says.
Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce President Sandra Wilson said the chamber's trip to Washington, D.C., in September was essential to securing the grant secured.
"It was very competitive when our chamber was in D.C. in September. That's what we heard," Wilson said. "To my knowledge, Kentucky only got three, and we are one of them. It will be funded by the federal government with some matching funds from the city."
The city of Paducah will contribute $1.1 million to the project. Harless said they'll need to begin construction on the riverfront in the next two years. You can read the city's plans here and see the pictures below. To watch the city's announcement, click here.