A fresh look, a positive attitude
by Jennifer Cohron
Jun 22, 2010 | 1639 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Construction worker Chris Odom breaks rock where new water and sewer lines will soon be installed as part of a $400,000 project. - Photo by: Jennifer Cohron
Construction worker Chris Odom breaks rock where new water and sewer lines will soon be installed as part of a $400,000 project. - Photo by: Jennifer Cohron
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PARRISH -- Downtown Parrish is getting a facelift.

City officials held a groundbreaking ceremony Monday for a $330,000 project that will add new sidewalks and street lights along Main Drive.

Mayor Wayne Gross said the project's first phase includes the area from the old Bank of Parrish to Parrish Elementary School. Construction is set to begin next Monday and expected to be completed by Nov. 11.

After that, Gross hopes to see the improvements extend through the rest of the town.

"Phase two goes to about the middle of town at Mae Francis Street. Hopefully, we'll get phase three eventually that will go out to Highway 269," Gross said.

Revitalization is also ongoing beneath the streets of Parrish.

Work began last month to add new water and sewer lines on Taft Road and its adjacent streets. The galvanized pipes in that area, the last remaining relics of the town's old water system, have been serving residents for decades.

"We had a lot of issues with muddy water because of leaks associated with the age of the infrastructure," said Robert Chandler, general manager of the Parrish Water Works and Sewer Board.

The $400,000 project is providing new lines, meters and hydrants. Chandler said when the work is finished in September, the city's water loss should be reduced by 10 to 15 percent.

Updates have also been made at City Hall in the past year. The center of the town's government now has a new sign and flagpole as well as a fresh coat of paint inside. The floors will be redone soon as well.

Council members William Smith and William Banks, who attended Monday's groundbreaking ceremony, said they are proud of the work being done to make Parrish look better.

Banks said his next goal is to get some paving done in the future.

"These streets in the west part of town haven't been paved in years," he said.

Smith said Gross is responsible for a new sense of civic pride in Parrish citizens since being elected in 2008.

However, Gross commended city clerk Marcy Brown and former Water Works and Sewer Board general manager Jason Langley for securing the funding that has made recent revitalization projects possible.

"When people say that I've done a good job, I tell them that I haven't done anything. Those two deserve the credit for it," Gross said.