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by Jeramia Trotter - WMCTV.com -
A Mid-South team that united to win a major federal grant did some celebrating Monday.
A $15 million dollar grant will extend the Greenline across the Mississippi River.
According to its proponents, the Harahan Bridge, which was built in 1916, will play a key role in future development of downtown Memphis, West Memphis and beyond.
Rep. Steve Cohen united with other Mid-South political and business leaders to convince the U.S. Department of Transportation to award a $15 million federal grant.
The money will pay for improvements on Main Street Memphis, the AMTRAK station but most will go toward adding a pedestrian and cycling pathway across the Mighty Mississippi on the Harahan Bridge. Paul Morris, of the Downtown Commission, said the Transportation Department gave Memphis a 5 percent chance of winning the $15 million TIGER grant.
"People like Mayor Luttrell and Mayor Wharton have such a can-do attitude,” he said. “They kind of said… maybe this can happen. I want everyone here to understand how unlikely it was for Memphis to get one of these TIGER grants. There are a lot of communities across this country that worked as hard as we did but didn't get it."
The project now moves to the detailed engineering phase and work could begin on the bridge connection within a year.
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