LEETONIA, Ohio (WKBN) – Leetonia is working on a project to help improve the village. It’s divided into four different phases.

Last week, the village was awarded a $1.57 million grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation to help improve Main Street, which runs through the heart of downtown.

Over the years, the area has run into issues like cracks and uneven sidewalks.

Village officials hope the project will breathe some life into the area.

“We underutilize a lot of our assets here, and this is just going to help promote and clean up the downtown and make our business district more viable and more attractive for more start-ups,” said Mayor Kevin Siembida.

They want to tear out old roads, sidewalks and waterlines and put new ones in to meet Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requirements.

“In targeting that area is to modernize our water system and bring it up to modern specs,” Siembida said.

One end of Main Street still has old-fashioned brick roads. That portion has bumps that stick up from the road. A decision has not been made yet if the bricks will remain.

“Whether we reutilize those bricks or put new bricks down or whether it goes an asphalt with a brick lining,” Siembida said.

On the other end of Main Street is part of a one-way. A decision has not been made if it’s going to be a one-way road, but the village is looking into it.

The mayor said phase one of the project can bring businesses to the downtown area. He is also hoping this can benefit riders on the Greenway Bike Trail, which runs through Leetonia.

“We will be bringing it down Main Street and to streamline that traffic so it’s not spread out all over the town,” Siembida said.

“We’re making this a destination area, so people who are going to joy ride, walk the trail, that’s going to put them into our downtown business district.”

Funds won’t be released until 2025 for the construction, and the village will be planning and designing over the next year or two. Phase one will also include parts of Walnut Street and Chestnut Street.