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Ferguson mayor waiting on grant approval for West Florissant Avenue project

The $32 million RAISE grant from the U.S. Dept. of Transportation will help with improving safety for drivers and pedestrians on West Florissant Avenue

FERGUSON, Mo. — West Florissant Avenue is a busy thoroughfare, linking north St. Louis County, the cities of Ferguson and Dellwood to surrounding areas.

"We have 33,000 cars that pass up and down West Florissant," Ferguson Mayor Ella Jones said.

That's why Jones is moving forward on plans to make West Florissant Avenue safer by applying for a $23 million RAISE grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation

"We are going to have walkable sidewalks. There will be a curb that separate the sidewalks, greenery, you know, it's going to beautify W. Florissant so we can attract businesses to this corridor," Jones said.

Longtime Ferguson insurance business owner Joshura Davis wrote a letter in support, saying this is part of Ferguson's progress in moving forward since the unrest following the Michael Brown shooting.

"This is something we've been trying to get for years since after the uprising. So, hopefully going after the RAISE grant this time we get support not only from the St. Louis County, but from the government to say OK Ferguson really needs this," Davis said.

The designs include new crosswalks, a median and lighting along the stretch of West Florissant between Stein Road and Ferguson Avenue, making it safer for drivers and pedestrians.

"It's a big plus for Ferguson, and it's going to help us grow and be a destination for people to want to come to," Jones said.

Jones says they'll know about the RAISE Grant by early December. 

That money will be added to the $10 million federal funds Congresswoman Cori Bush announced for the West Florissant project last month.

Jones hopes they can start the groundwork early next year.

Editor's note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated the dollar amount of the grant application. We regret the error.

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