Trails extension begins walk to completionPublished 12:04am Saturday, July 21, 2012
NATCHEZ — Twenty-seven panels showcasing the array of multi-cultural heritage history on St. Catherine Street for the second phase of the Natchez Trails Project will be completed and delivered to the Historic Natchez Foundation in September.
The interpretive panels, Historic Natchez Foundation Executive Director Mimi Miller said, highlight predominantly African-American heritage, as well as Danish, Polish, French, Lebanese and Italian.
Miller said one panel is completely dedicated to the Stallone family because of their continuing presence on St. Catherine Street.
Miller said she, Friends of the Forks of the Road Coordinator Ser Seshsh Ab Heter-Clifford M. Boxley, City Engineer David Gardner and many members of the community worked together to find information and photographs for the panels.
“There was a lot of community involvement, people whose lives have been associated with St. Catherine Street, and we really couldn’t have done it without them,” Miller said.
The panels were designed and laid out in-house at the foundation, Miller said.
Plans for the second phase of the Trails, Gardner said, are a little more than halfway ready to be sent to the state for final approval.
Gardner said the city still has a number of approvals to get for the project, and he said he would not be surprised if it is well into next year before construction starts.
The second phase, Gardner said, will cost approximately $800,000 and will be funded through several different sources. The city’s cost, which Gardner said has already been set aside, will be approximately $120,000.
The St. Catherine Street-Forks of the Road Trails project will extend along St. Catherine Street from Martin Luther King Jr. Street to the site of the Forks of the Road slave markets.
Like the first phase of the Natchez Trails Project, the second phase will include upgraded sidewalks, landscaping and interpretive panels.
The corner of Martin Luther King Jr. and St. Catherine streets will be decorative light poles and pedestrian crossing signal as part of the second phase of the Natchez Trails Project.
The black poles will match other decorative poles that have been placed around the city, such as on John R. Junkin and Seargent S. Prentiss drives.