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Sunday, August 14, 2011

St. Elizabeth Receives a Checkup (Guest Post by Ben Petracco)

Drive along Grand Avenue and you may notice the hillside being tapered back from foliage, the sidewalks being torn up and construction equipment all along the street. Based on my last post, I guess I have a thing for streetscapes, but this caught my eye. I inquired with Ron Dill, the Director of General Services for the city, to see what all the work was about.
Mr. Dill told me, “The work being done is a collaborative project with St. Elizabeth along with involvement from the cities of Newport and Fort Thomas as well as the utility company.”
The initial phase of the project already looks great, it has opened up the sidewalk so much by cutting the trees back. I mentioned the sidewalks. They did not get overlooked in the streetscape; they will be replaced also, from the entrance to the hospital all the way down the hill towards the stoplight.

The whole laundry list of things being done for the project is: upgrading the storm sewer system, gas line relocation, sidewalk replacement and vast improvements in landscaping and streetscape improvements. There are usually beautiful flowers and landscaping around the St. Elizabeth sign at the entrance, but entering or leaving a hospital in any situation, more flowers are always welcome.
Another detail of the entire project was the fact that St. Elizabeth purchased the Mildred Dean Elementary School which is out of sight from Grand Avenue, but is located up the driveway across the street from the Graeters building. I asked Ron Dill about the purchase of the school building and the plan that St. Elizabeth had for it in the future. He was able to confirm that the hospital had, in fact, purchased the building, but since the school is located in Newport the specific plan for that property’s future was not known.
Mildred Dean’s building and property’s future may not be known, but what is for certain is that St. Elizabeth is making improvements to it’s grounds and the services that it will be able to offer in the future. I am looking forward to seeing the final product with new sidewalks, fresh landscaping with improved curb appeal, and eventual incorporation of the school property. What are your thoughts on the St. Elizabeth streetscape project? Leave your comment here:


  1. It is nice to hear an update on the construction taking place in this area. I am looking forward to seeing the final product.

  2. This was a nice update on the construction area on Grand Avenue. Will return for updates about the Mildred Dean area on Grand. The pictures were good as well. That area needed some updates and landscaping!!

  3. I have drive past St. E. Ft. Thomas and wondered what the heck was happening, now I know! thanks Ben,
    Ellen M. Turner

  4. Ben's doing a great job. Gotten a lot of good comments to my email. Hoping he contributes a lot more.

  5. This is useful information. I really wish that construction crews would remove "Lane Closed Ahead" and similar signs when the lane is not, in fact, closed. Common problem everywhere and I'm surprised local officials don't point this out. This creates danger for crews when the public decides to ignore the signs since they don't reflect actual conditions.