BY MIKE McCARTHY | MIRROR EDITOR — With all major construction work on Conant Street completed, the city of Maumee’s focus has now turned toward making repairs and improvements in the 100 blocks of each of the five side streets in uptown Maumee.
Following is a street-by-street summary of what Maumee residents can expect in the coming weeks:
All the major road construction work on Conant Street was completed by the June 30 deadline, but there are still a few items remaining to be crossed off the “to do” list.
“Conant Street is essentially complete, except for some touching up of the irrigation system and installing the arches and doing the stone around the arches,” stated Maumee city administrator Dr. Patrick Burtch.
The placement of the arches is a complex matter, said Burtch. “There is so much stuff going on underground that the arches can’t be installed exactly where they were originally planned, and when you change it like that, you have to do GPS location of each anchor bolt in those bases so that the arches can be redesigned to fit that base precisely,” Burtch explained.
Burtch revealed that two of the arches are presently being fabricated and are projected to be installed in the late summer or early fall. “The whole project should be completed by December,” he added.
Burtch also stated that the new power system that will be dedicated solely for the uptown area has not yet been installed. “We’re still waiting for that,” he said. “Right now, we are running the irrigation system manually. We turn a valve on in the morning to run it and we turn it back off, so the plants don’t die.”
Burtch said that there has been a bit of a delay in getting the power system implemented uptown, but he expects the system to be installed and functioning within the next few weeks.
The light poles and mast arms in the uptown area will also have to be painted black in the coming weeks to integrate with the new uptown Maumee theme.
Burtch also revealed that new LED panels will be mounted on the existing mast arms that extend over Conant Street from their respective street poles, which are located at each corner intersection in the uptown area. The LED panels will display the names of the various uptown side streets in blue and white for greater visibility and recognition by motorists traveling along Conant Street.
East Harrison Street
An extensive amount of construction work has been taking place in the 100 and 200 blocks of East Harrison Street over the past few weeks.
New curbs, approaches, sidewalks and storm sewers are being installed from the dead-end area of East Harrison Street, near Conant Street, all the way up to Elizabeth Street.
New curbs will be installed on both the north and south sides of the 100 block of East Harrison Street and along the river side of the 200 block of East Harrison Street since the curbs running parallel to the First Presbyterian Church parking lot are already in good condition.
The city is also working on making improvements to the Union School alley in conjunction with the separate Union School parking lot renovation project that is also taking place this month.
East Broadway Street
The 100 block of East Broadway Street has been closed for the past three weeks for gas line replacement work being done by Miller Pipe Line on behalf of Columbia Gas.
Workers from Miller Pipe Line have run into a snag, however, as they discovered last week that they have run two sections short of the 40-foot-long, 12-inch-diameter gas line pipe material needed to complete the 586-foot-long project. Burtch said that they are waiting on materials, and the completion date is now unknown.
This inopportune work stoppage is causing a subsequent delay in the city’s plans to rip up the 100 block of East Broadway Street to begin the next phase of the uptown Maumee streetscape improvement project.
It was hoped that the city’s portion of the project would be completed by late August, but that seems unlikely unless the new gas line material becomes available soon. The city will need at least four weeks to complete the streetscape project.
Although the sign at the corner of East Broadway and Conant streets says that the 100 block of East Broadway Street is closed, motorists heading northbound on Conant Street have been turning right and accessing the southern portion of the 100 block of East Broadway as a normal through street since the gas line work in the northern portion of the street has been delayed and presents no safety concern.
The northern lane of the 100 block of East Broadway Street, between Gibbs Street and Conant Street, remains closed to through traffic as much of the roadway has been covered up with large metal plates covering the large trench that was dug to accommodate the new gas line.
West Broadway Street
Since city construction work is being hampered by the gas line delay in the 100 block of East Broadway Street, workers have turned their attention to the south side of the 100 block of West Broadway Street in front of the St. Joseph Catholic Church Community Center near Allen Street.
Workers have already sawcut the asphalt near the corner of Allen and Broadway to prepare for excavation of a portion of the road and the subsequent construction of angled parking spaces along the south side of the 100 block of West Broadway as well as on the east side of Allen Street. Once that side of the street is done, work will shift to the north side of East Broadway Street for the installation of more angled parking.
This week, the south side of the 100 block of West Broadway Street between Allen and Conant streets was scheduled to be closed to through traffic to allow for construction work, while the north side of the 100 block of West Broadway was scheduled to remain open to traffic.
“We hope to get done before school starts, but it’s going to be tough,” said Burtch. “We are really working hard to do that.”
Burtch stated on Tuesday that if the gas line installation on East Broadway can somehow be completed this week, the city’s priority will be to immediately commence its work in the 100 block of East Broadway Street. If the gas line delay continues, the city will instead focus its attention on the 100 block of West Broadway Street.
Burtch emphasized that it will be a last-minute decision based upon the best available option.
West John Street
Workers were busy pouring new concrete sidewalks in the 100 block of West John Street on Tuesday morning.
Several new curbs have been installed in preparation for new angled parking spaces on the south side of the 100 block of West John Steet and the new asphalt is expected to be poured soon.
The north side of the 100 block of West John Street recently had several new angled parking spaces installed near the Maison-Dardenne-Walker Funeral Home.