CONSTRUCTION TO BEGIN ON WASHINGTON STREET REDESIGN
The contract for construction of the $17 million Washington Street rehabilitation and redesign project has been awarded and construction is scheduled to begin in early January. In addition to milling, paving and striping Washington Street from Observer Highway to 15th Street, the project also includes:
· Installation of 15 new traffic signals with pedestrian countdown timers, emergency pre-emption system, and optimized signal timing
· Installation of concrete bump outs at corners with ADA handicap curb ramps and high visibility crosswalks
· Addition of 15 rain gardens and drainage improvements to capture stormwater and help reduce the City’s flooding
· Replacement of century-old water mains and service lines to new valve boxes at the curb
· Installation of conduit for an electrical microgrid and fiber optic cabling
· Refurbishment of all existing street lights with more efficient lighting fixtures
· Addition of Class II unprotected bicycle lanes from Observer Highway to 8th Street
· Creation of dedicated commercial loading zones
The scope of the project improvements is limited to the roadway from curb to curb. With the exception of corners and improved lighting, the project will not include replacement of sidewalks or street furniture.
Work on the project was scheduled to begin this fall, however due to a frivolous legal challenge by one of the bidders, the City was unable to award the contract until last week. The legal challenge was dismissed and the City won the litigation in full and is now proceeding with this important project.
The contract has been approved, and the contractor has been issued the Notice to Proceed and has begun mobilization for the project. The contractor anticipates beginning construction in early January, with the digging of test pits to minimize future utility conflicts during construction. The contract requires that all work between Observer Highway and 8th Street be complete within 365 days and that the entire project between Observer Highway and 15th Street be complete within 550 days. Additional project milestones require that the first traffic signal be installed and operational within 5 months, with an additional new signal operational every 3 weeks. The contractor will be assessed liquidated damages of $5,000 per day if the project is not completed on time.
Construction hours will be Monday through Friday, 7:00am to 7:00pm and Saturday 9:00am to 3:00pm. On weekdays, setup of daily activities will be permitted to begin at 6:30am with cleanup activities completed by 8:00pm. On Saturdays, setup is permitted to start at 8:30am with cleanup completed by 4:00pm. The modified construction hours were approved by the City Council in order to expedite the construction schedule and minimize the disruption to this vital commercial corridor.
The contractor may have a maximum of three work zones, and there must be a minimum of two intersections between work zones. Work zones will begin mid-block and may include up to two intersections. There will be no parking on both sides of the road along blocks where a work zone has been established. Two-way traffic will be maintained on Washington Street during construction.
Project updates will be posted on the project website at www.washingtonstreetproject.com, which will be available as of Friday, December 9th. Updates will also be issued via an email and through social media accounts. Visit the project website to sign up to receive project updates via email. A field office will be established where the project Resident Engineer will hold regular office hours.
Pre-Construction Water Line Valve Inspections
Starting on Tuesday, December 13th, through Thursday, December 15th, SUEZ Water will be inspecting water valves along Washington Street and isolating sections of the main to verify that the shutdown will hold during the replacement of the main. Crews will be on site at approximately 9:00pm to clean out valves in preparation of the main shutdown. The water main on each block will be temporarily shut down for 10 to 15 minutes between midnight and 5:00am in order to minimize disruptions to businesses and residents. Work will begin at Observer Highway and proceed north. Since many of the valves are old, there is the possibility of a valve breaking, and SUEZ crews will be on site to make any necessary repairs.
The project will involve the replacement of water mains as well as water service lines from the main to new valve boxes at the curb. It will not include replacement of private service lines from the curb to buildings, so it is recommended that property owners who still have older lead water lines replace the service line to their property with copper pipe or other approved material. Please contact SUEZ Water at 844-341-5323 (LEAD) if you plan to replace your service line or visit www.mysuezwater.com/lead for more information. In addition, property owners who need to upgrade any private utilities that extend under the roadway including sewer laterals, gas, electric, cable, phone, or Internet are strongly urged to make all needed road and sidewalk openings as quickly as possible prior to completion of the project.
Temporary Interruption of Water Service
There will be a brief interruption in water service for each of the 537 water services along Washington Street for the replacement of the water mains and service lines to the curb. The project engineer and contractor will coordinate with property owners to minimize disruption to businesses and residents.
Commercial Deliveries & Waste
Temporary delivery zones and trash storage and pickup areas will be established for the affected businesses/residents within the work zone areas.