Mulberry City Council members discussed ongoing projects and future plans for the city during their April 15 meeting.

Results from an economic evaluation of the city were presented by Josh Markham and Brett Roberts from the University of Central Arkansas, which conducted the study in partnership with University of Arkansas at Little Rock, said Mayor Gary Baxter.

Through a Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation grant to pay for the study, those giving the analysis were able to develop the city’s website and provide feedback on what area the city can consider assets and which can be improved, Baxter said.

"That worked out very, very well for us," Baxter said. "They looked at the city as an outsider would."

Markham noted that the proximity of Interstate 40 is conducive to transportation and warehousing, and gave information on how to provide better directions for visitors to attractions such as the city parks, Baxter said.

Monica Freeland, the mayor’s assistant, announced at the meeting that the Arkansas Soybean Promotion Board donated $2,500 to go toward costs of the 2014 Edamame Festival. The board members were so impressed with this year’s festival that they already plan to donate for next year, Freeland said.

Those who will be organizing the 2015 festival are taking notes of recommendations for improvements, she said.

The second phase of the Wire Road paving project began April 28 and is expected to be completed by the end of August, Baxter said.

This is the second mile along Wire Road, from Georgia Ridge Road to Graphic Road, Baxter said. The first mile was completed five years ago, he said.

Cove Creek Construction was the low bidder to construct the Safe Routes to School sidewalk project, which will be from 10th Street to Marvin Elementary School property line. Construction should begin in the next 60 days, Baxter said.