MIDDLETOWN, Ky. (March 2004) Main Street Middletown may
soon receive a facelift. Mayor Byron Chapman wants to give it a more
The city has applied for and received letters of approval for two
grants to aid in upgrading a business-residential-historical section
of the downtown area. Approval for a Transportation Enhancement Authority
(TEA-21) $300,000 grant was announced in August 2003 by former Kentucky
Gov. Paul Patton. The grant would fund street improvements along old
U.S. 60 (Main Street).
City Hall plans to move into
the Wetherby House (above).
This Main Street Streetscape project would add green spaces, additional
parking, brick sidewalks, landscaped medians, iron benches and address
drainage problems. The area has already been surveyed, said Chapman,
and bids placed for an architect.
Improvements should make the downtown area more of a focal point for
business and the community. In 1933, U.S. 60 was altered, moving the
highway to the north of Middletown. Most businesses then sprung up
along this new route, which is the reason todays Main Street
and Old Shelbyville Road remain as well kept as it was in the early
With many of the surrounding buildings more than 200 years old, Chapman
said the area definitely needed renovating. The application process
was lengthy, but the result would be an area more compliant to Middletowns
quaint atmosphere of antique, jewelry, pottery and collectible shops
The grant is an 80/20 percent match, with the city of Middletown required
to match 20 percent of a total derived from taxpayers. City Clerk
Betty Daigrepont is hoping to receive money by April.
A second $250,000 transportation grant was awarded to the city for
renovation efforts on the Wetherby House, located at 11803 Old Shelbyville
Rd. When this project is completed, Chapman said this house would
become the new City Hall.
A three-acre park surrounds it. Chapman expects to be moved into the
new location by late summer or early fall 2004. Three City Hall offices
currently share space with the Middletown Museum and the Middletown
Chamber of Commerce.
The building has been painted and new shutters installed. Since buying
the house several years ago, the city has also put down sidewalks,
laid a walking path around the house and added historical light posts,
said Daigrepont. She said the city purchased the house because it
was on the National Register of Historic Places and didnt want
to see the house destroyed. Middletown has nine buildings listed on
A third beautification project Middletown has embarked upon is one-and-a-half
acres for a community park. This land was purchased for $90,000 from
Don Lorenz. Situated near Crosscreek Subdivision, Kids already
used the area as a park, said Chapman.
This land had contained a pumping station at one time, said Daigrepont.
After the station closed, the land reverted back to its former owner.
It became available after this, and Daigrepont said it was a
nice piece of land. A creek runs through the property, and the
city has had environmental studies conducted before enhancing the
lot. Although nothing has been done yet, including the naming of the
park, benches and a walking path are expected to be installed.