|People walk up the sidewalk along the First Congregational Church in Saugatuck.|
Four months ago, Joy Muehlenbeck of Saugatuck approached the Saugatuck City Council to ask for a hand rail along about 220 feet of sidewalk on Hoffman Street.
The city balked at the idea when the prices came in as high $12,000-$25,000.
Muehlenbeck didn’t give up and was back before the city council last week with a lower estimate of $6,600. She got the estimate herself and based on a railing design at the Old School House History Center, 130 Center St.
|Cars park along the slope to the Saugatuck Woman’s Club.|
“Thanks for dogging us on this,” said Councilman Barry Johnson.
“It’s a very difficult hill to go down,” she said. “At night, it’s particularly difficult.”
A railing would help keep the site accessible, especially in the winter. “It’s so, so important for people who are mobile and just need that security,” she added about a railing.
The sidewalk slopes from the First Congregational Church, 296 Hoffman St., to the Saugatuck Woman’s Club, 303 Butler St. There is a free parking lot at the top of the hill by the church.
The Woman’s Club is the site of many community events, such as the Chamber Music Festival in the summer and productions of “A Christmas Carol” in the winter.
City Manager Kirk Harrier originally suggested putting more handicap-accessible parking by the Woman’s Club so people wouldn’t have to walk from the church. People who are not handicapped, though, still use the sloped sidewalk, Muehlenbeck said.
|A resident has requested a railing for the sidewalk that slopes from the First Congregational Church, 296 Hoffman St., to the Saugatuck Woman’s Club, 303 Butler St.|