The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) unveiled two grants in Arkansas today totaling $2.6 million and the promise of new jobs.
U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced a $2 million grant for the conversion of the historic Rock Island Railroad Bridge to a pedestrian bridge. The project, which has been years in the making, will make for a direct connection between the Clinton Library and downtown North Little Rock. Work associated with the renovation project is expected to result in a significant number of construction jobs.
As previously reported, the state of Arkansas has contributed $2.5 million to the bridge project. Little Rock, North Little Rock and Pulaski County have all made commitments of more than $1.5 million, while the Clinton Foundation has said it would pledge up to $4 million and help raise any remaining funds for the project.
Also, the EDA released $600,000 to UAMS’ Bioventures Center, a move expected to add 20 jobs and an additional $258,000 in private investment.
The project will provide UAMS BioVentures with 12 offices and 12 labs, doubling the existing number.
“We’re designing the additional space to accommodate more nanomedicine technologies,” said Dr. Mike Douglas, director of UAMS’ BioVentures.