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"Walkway To The Sea"


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Hyannis project breaks ground



October 10, 2003

HYANNIS - Their shovels turned no sod, but Barnstable and state officials celebrated a groundbreaking project yesterday that will link the hub of downtown business with the sights of Hyannis Harbor.

By spring 2005, Hyannis will sport a new "Walkway to the Sea" along with improved sidewalks, street lamps and traffic signals along Main Street as part of a $4.4 million downtown improvement program.

The walkway was first envisioned for Hyannis more than 40 years ago but has been stymied over disagreements, funding and design issues.

"Is there anybody here who actually believes this is happening," Barnstable Town Council Vice President Robert Jones asked a crowd of nearly 100 people. "How many years has it been? How many hours?"

Starting at the Iyanough statue along Main Street in front of town hall, tourists and residents will be able to follow a brick path through the Town Green and out onto an overlook view of the harbor. Paved brick crosswalks to Aselton Park and the harbor beyond will lead people across Ocean and South streets.


Iyanough Statue at the Village Green, starting point of the "Walkway To The Sea."

"One of the things I kept hearing was, people would come and walk to town hall and say 'Where is the harbor?'" said park planner John Kissida, vice president of the Cambridge firm Camp Dresser & McKee.

Running the course of the path will be granite arranged in a wave pattern to show people the way.

"The idea of this was to get something built that would make the connections," Kissida said.

A second phase will look at the intersection of South and Sea streets, which has been a subject of debate over the years as ideas for tunnels and bridges to cross the roadway were bounced around.

Construction on the walkway project will not officially begin until next week, with Main Street work expected to begin two weeks later, Barnstable Project Engineer Stephen Seymour said.

The Main Street project will upgrade drainage systems, resurface the street, create new sidewalks and install more pedestrian-friendly crosswalks and traffic-calming features. No construction will take place during high-traffic times such as holidays and the summer.

"This always has been and hopefully always will be the heart and soul of Main Street," Town Manager John Klimm said. "We need to make sure it's the beginning of the revitalization and not the end."

The state Department of Housing and Community Development and the Executive Office of Transportation and Construction awarded the town $3 million in grants.

The remaining costs were covered by private grants and donations, with the town providing engineering services.

From Cape Cod Times

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It's the 4th largest town in Massachusetts in area. It tends to sprawl. It's just about built out.

Town Size: 60.17 sq. miles of land - Rank: 4/351

Population: 47,821

Population density: 795 people per sq. mile - Rank: 127/351

I guess 795 per sq. mile isn't too bad. More dense than I thought.

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