Streets in Lyman (pop. 412) were rough, dusty and covered with water whenever flooding occurred. That all changed when the village was awarded a $212,300 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) through the Panhandle Area Development District (PADD) for a proposed public works project. PADD receives a major portion of its funding from the Nebraska Department of Economic Development.
Lyman’s one-year and six-year street plans included paving Main Street and four other streets with asphalt, and installing new curbing and gutters along the streets. The grant was ultimately used to pave streets, install curbing and gutters, and construct a drainage structure.
The Village Board of Trustees and the village clerk were the driving forces behind the project. Before Lyman received the funding, 50% of the streets were unpaved. The village drew up a one-year plan for conducting normal street maintenance. The six-year plan included grading, curb construction, removal of deteriorating pavement, laying down a new pad of asphalt, and installing a drainage structure that helps alleviate flooding throughout residents’ yards and basements.
Since the project’s completion, children have been able to roller-skate, skateboard, and bicycle along the dust-free streets, and property values have increased. Citizens’ pride in their community also has increased and is evident in the way they maintain the streets.