Of all of the roads in Lawton, I hear more complaints about Lee Boulevard.  Between pot holes, and roller coaster inclines on one of the most traveled for industry roads in town, there is great news on the horizon!Yesterday (February 18, 2021), the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $2 million CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to the city of Lawton, Oklahoma, to make roadway improvements to Lee Boulevard to improve access to the Lawton Industrial Park, Great Plains Technology Institute, and Southwest Medical Center. The EDA grant, to be matched with $5.5 million in local investment, is expected to retain 3,070 jobs.

“EDA is committed to helping communities across the nation implement strategies to mitigate economic hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This project will improve Lee Boulevard to support the flow of goods and products in and out of the Lawton Industrial Park, provide support to the Great Plains Technology Institute, which provides critical workforce training, and allow better access to healthcare being administered at the Southwest Medical Center.”

“I am delighted that the city of Lawton will receive substantial CARES Act recovery assistance to make much needed accessibility updates to Lee Boulevard, which is a critical roadway for healthcare, education and economic opportunities in the community,” said Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04). “This improvement project will not only support thousands of existing jobs in Lawton and Southwest Oklahoma, but it will help generate new business along the main corridor of business and industry. Last year, I was proud to express my support of federal grant funding for this project, and I am grateful that the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration is making this significant investment.”

This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the Association of South Central Oklahoma Governments (ASCOG), which EDA funds to help bring together the public and private sectors to create an economic development roadmap to strengthen the regional economy, support private capital investment, and create jobs.

 This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

 About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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