No Man’s Land loses out again on grant

       A $10.7 million grant request to help the West-side's “No Man's Land” area went nowhere.
       The word came back last week from the U.S. Department of Transporta-tion that the request for federal stimulus funds had been denied.
       “It was a real longshot, but you never know,” said Kathleen Krager of City Traffic Engineering.
       The money would have combined with $4.3 million in local funds to pay for a new bridge over Fountain Creek (at Colorado Avenue near Columbia Road), as well as storm sewers, underground utilities, sidewalks, curb and gutter, bus stops and bike lanes.
       No reasons have been provided as yet. “We won't get a debriefing for another month or so,” said Krager, who had coordinated the submittal that involved nine government entities in all. However, she did note that in all of Colorado only $2 million were awarded from the grant's total of $600 million. She said that was the second year in a row that the state seemed to get less than might have been expected from this particular federal grant.
       For No Man's Land, it's the second time in three years, a grant proposal has lost out. A request for up to $9.5 from the Colorado Department of Transporta-tion was denied in 2008.
       El Paso County Commissioner Sallie Clark, a Westside resident and businesswoman, said she did not know of any other possible grant sources at this time, but “hope springs eternal.”
       The No Man's Land nickname has been given to the stretch of Colorado/Manitou Avenue between about 32nd Street and Manitou's highway overpass because of its older businesses, few sidewalks, aging public infrastructure and overlapping government jurisdictions.

Westside Pioneer article