Downtown Corridor Improvements - Week 10 Progress Report
As this week begins to wrap up, here is an idea of what to expect next week.
Not related to this project except by unfortunate location and circumstance, we had an emergency sewer repair in the alley behind Mill City Grill. A section of 10” sewer main collapsed and began sucking in fines from the overlying soils, creating a void under the center seam of the alley. The alley had to be closed on Monday to keep traffic off and allow crews to periodically vacuum out the main to keep it from plugging and backing up. Tuesday, it was excavated to expose the pipe and nearest joints, determine the extent of the damage, and plan for repairs. Wednesday it was sectioned out, replaced and backfilled. Concrete can’t be delivered until Monday so extra rock was placed today to make it driveable and re-open the alley. The extra rock will have to be removed before concrete can be poured but we know that alley is particularly important right now for businesses relying on alley access for customers to use back entrances.
In project news, AES constructed raingardens at the NE corner of Hemlock outside Urban Saloon. Colored concrete was poured mid-block and miscellaneous forming and pouring was done in the paver section for light pole bases and furnishings. Temporary lighting was installed at mid-block to make sure the crosswalk stays lit for pedestrians. Today, AES removed the mid-block crosswalk and tomorrow they plan to pour two driveways at Clean Machine (weather permitting).
The plan for next week is ambitious so hold onto your seats. To start, pavers are coming along with the landscaping contractor. Pavers will take roughly one week to do both sides of the street, coming back later to finish up a small section in the 1100 block. The landscaping contractor will need one week each side of the street to first install and test the irrigation system, and then plant the street trees and rain gardens.
On Tuesday, AES plans to tackle crosswalks in the north bound lane in the 1100 and 1200 block of Commerce, and across Hemlock on the east side of Commerce. On Commerce, crosswalks will be constructed one-half at a time in order to keep the southbound lane open. On Hemlock, crosswalks will be constructed the full width of the street but only on one side of the intersection. The crosswalks are pervious concrete which requires more time to cure before steel plates can be put down to re-open the street and allow traffic loads. Construction and cure time is estimated to require (10) days, and will be immediately followed by additional closures and traffic changes to construct crosswalks in the opposing lane. Here’s what to expect:
• 1100 and 1200 blocks of Commerce will be open to one lane, one way, south bound traffic only.
• North bound traffic will be detoured to 12th Avenue at Florida Street.
• 10-day closure will be in effect at Hemlock Street on the east side of Commerce.
• Vehicle access on Hemlock between 12th and Commerce will be limited to local traffic only.
• Traffic signals at the intersection of Commerce and Hemlock will be set to flash red.
• On-street parking is not available in the 1200 block of Commerce during construction.