BELFAST — Councilors discussed and accepted funding for upgrades on Wight Street at their May 17 meeting. The funds are coming from two federal grants and a bond.

The $1,662,000 combined federal funds will go toward installing sewer lines, a small pump station, concrete curbing, in-ground storm drains, catch basins, sidewalks, crosswalks, pedestrian-activated crosswalks, speed tables and painting and striping bicycle lanes on Wight Street, according to Economic Development Director Thomas Kittredge, along with resurfacing and reconstructing the road.

The city will also extend the sewer line down part of Congress Street, he said. Estimated project costs for the upgrades are about $2,555,000. The city will seek an $893,000 bond through the Maine Municipal Bond Bank to cover the rest of the project expenses. That bond can be paid for with TIF funds from the Wight Street Affordable Housing Development and Tax Incremented Financing District.

With $972,000 coming from United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, the federal government reinstated direct spending programs that “earmark” money for certain projects in municipalities, he said. No matching funds are required to receive the money.

The city also received a $690,000 Community Development Block Grant from the Public Infrastructure Program, he said. The city will have to provide $172,500 in matching funds to receive that grant. One of the stipulations for that grant is that at least 51% of the people living on that street earn a low-to-moderate income. The city found that 69.8% of residents on that street fall into that income bracket.

A Community Development Advisory Committee was established as part of that grant. Councilors appointed City Planner Jon Boynton, Planning and Codes Director Bub Fournier, Kittridge, councilors Paul Dean and Mike Hurley and Pedestrian Biking and Hiking Committee member Chris Gardner to that committee.

The committee will oversee and guide the project through the planning and implantation phase, recommend who to select for consultations and contractors, organize opportunities for the public to be involved in the project, organize and publicize the project and its progress, and develop and implement a policy for hearing and resolving complaints about the project, according to Kittredge. The committee will dissolve after the project is complete.

The city originally requested $4,971,500 from the federal government to complete the upgrades on Salmond Street also, but because it received only about 20% of that request, the city will be able to do upgrades only to Wight Street and part of Congress Street, Kittredge said.

The city is hiring Olver Associates Inc. for the engineering services to design the project, bid it out and manage the project while it is under construction, he said. Olver’s services amount to $340,000.

Councilors were adamant at the meeting that residents in the area have ample opportunities to share their view of the upgrades and how they would like the area to look. Councilors discussed having one or two residents from Wight Street on the advisory committee but ultimately decided against that.

City Manager Erin Herbig suggested that Olver Associates Executive Vice President Mandy Olver develop an initial project design and then bring it to the council for discussion before it goes to the Planning Board.

Instead, Councilor Mary Mortier suggested the council have a workshop with Mandy Olver to discuss what aspects of the project design the public and council can influence. Then she suggested the city hold a public meeting about the project so residents have a chance to voice their opinions.

“We should get a little bit of professional education from Mandy of those practical things before she puts anything on paper in terms of a drawing,” she said, “so that we have a better foundation ourselves before we engage further with what was kind of engraved in stone that we can’t alter above the pavement or below the pavement.”

The city will have the work session to discuss project design June 14 at 6 p.m.