Wausau moves forward on Thomas St. project - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Wausau moves forward on Thomas St. project

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -

After months of discussion, city leaders are moving the controversial Thomas Street project forward.

"I can understand the anxiety from people along Thomas Street who feel like they have been waiting forever for some kind of closure and some type of direction,"  said Lisa Rasmussen, Wausau City Council President.

The project would widen the street to four lanes -- impacting many homes and business near there.

The project has seen plenty of ups and downs. Recently, the city learned it couldn't qualify for federal funding to help pay for it because the city didn't follow proper guidelines buying homes along Thomas Street.

But city leaders say that missed funding made up just a small part of the 15 million dollars this project will cost.

"We did find out from those grant sources that we are eligible for funding on alternate, different projects," said Rasmussen. "So at this point, the plan is to submit an alternate project that should qualify for grant money to replace the grant funding that was not able to be obtained for Thomas St."

Meaning, the city plans to take the saved money, and put it toward the Thomas Street project.

"So the rest of Thomas Street would come from the regular road budget, like we do every other street project that we have come up in the year," said Rasmussen.

But some of those who live on Thomas Street are not happy with the committee's decision.

"I just want them to listen to us," said Cindy Gwidt-Scheibe.  "You know, they are voting for it, but they're not listening to what we want."

It's unknown if the full city council will need to re-approve the project. Members will be talking with the city attorney to find out if the original vote approving this project still stands.

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