Pineville gets $700,000 to renovate historic downtown

PINEVILLE, Ky. (WTVQ) Gov. Andy Beshear has recommended the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) approve the City of Pineville’s application for the Courthouse Square Streetscape Renovation project.

Upon approval from ARC, the city will use more than $700,000 to upgrade streets and sidewalks following a major sewer and storm system overhaul in the Courthouse Square area.

“Courthouse Square is a pillar in the community and for the economy in Bell County,” said Gov. Beshear, who was in Pineville Saturday for the Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival. “This bold investment would greatly improve the experience of Bell County residents and tourists alike. If we are to sprint out of the pandemic and continue to strengthen our economy, we must continue to invest in projects, like this one, that improve infrastructure and opportunity in our local communities.”

The city plans to use the funds to widen the street around the Bell County Courthouse, install pavers in the parking areas, replace sidewalks, construct a conduit to place utilities underground and install public Wi-Fi in the Courthouse Square area.

Before ARC can approve the project, the city must submit a full application to the Department for Local Government (DLG), which administers ARC funding at the state level.

“This project would greatly improve opportunity in downtown Pineville by supporting the tourism industry and improving vital infrastructure,” said DLG Commissioner Dennis Keene. “ARC’s approval will strengthen a signature industry and provide better service to residents in Bell County.”

Courthouse Square already attracts thousands of visitors annually with the historic Bell Theater, local restaurants, bars and boutiques. If completed, this project is expected to attract more visitors and strengthen the tourism industry in the area.

Last year, Gov. Beshear also approved $1 million in funds from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program to aid with the Courthouse Square sewer system replacement project.

In addition to announcing his funding recommendation, on Saturday, Gov. Beshear also crowned the 2021 Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival Queen, Abigail Ray Canter of Western Kentucky University.

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