RICHMOND, Ky. (FOX 56) – Eastern Kentucky University is getting close to a half-million dollars to improve safety and increase transportation options.

Gov. Andy Beshear was in Richmond Tuesday afternoon where he handed EKU’s president and Richmond city leaders a large check that will fund this infrastructure investment.

The university is getting $369,200 to address a corridor on campus that has created safety hazards for students making the walk from campus to the shops and restaurants in downtown Richmond.

The university’s president explained the current problems. David McFaddin said, “There’s a middle school there so you get a lot of bus traffic, a lot of pedestrian traffic a lot of car traffic. It’s a lot of things intermingling right there.”

The area of focus is Summit Street. Madison Middle School sits on the corner and there’s a blind curve that leads up to two major campus dorms.

The current condition of the road and sidewalk right now is not ideal for commuters, especially those who walk. But this funding would pay for a 6-foot sidewalk and proper lighting so students and residents can safely commute around campus.

The strip is about a half-mile long, but the new sidewalk and associated features would safely take students even farther.

Beshear added, “It connects downtown Richmond and EKU in a safe way. It provides safe passage for students. It’s going to increase quality of life where people can live and create better connections between the university and the city.”

The project is now in the engineering stage. But President McFaddin hopes that construction will kick off before the end of the fall 2023 semester.