BY MIKE McCARTHY | MIRROR EDITOR — Phase two of the Uptown Maumee Streetscape Improve-ments Project has resumed this week in the 100 blocks of East and West Broadway streets.
Last Friday, Helms Construction workers tore up much of the old concrete on the south side of the 100 block of East Broadway Street near Union School in preparation for the installation of new sidewalks, electrical conduit, streetlights and angled parking spaces on Broadway between Conant and Gibbs streets.
As reported in The Mirror last week, the start of the Broadway Street project had been delayed for two weeks due to a work stoppage that hampered the new gas main installation work that was being performed in the 100 block of East Broadway Steet by Miller Pipe Line on behalf of Columbia Gas.
Two weeks ago, as they were nearing the completion of laying the new 586-foot gas line 4 feet underground on East Broadway Street, workers from Miller Pipe Line discovered that they were two 40-foot sections short of the 12-inch-diameter steel pipe material that was needed to complete the project and clear the way for the city of Maumee to begin its portion of the streetscape renovation work.
On Monday of this week, the missing steel pipe material was finally located and delivered to the East Broadway work site for installation and completion of the gas line project. At press time, city officials expected that the gas main vinstallation would be completed early this week.
As a result of this delay, the city lost two weeks of construction time on East Broadway Street, which means that a comfort zone no longer exists for getting the 100 blocks of East and West Broadway streets done before school starts at both Union School and St. Joseph Catholic School later this month.
Also taking place on Monday of this week, workers began tearing up the south side of the 100 block of West Broadway Street in front of the St. Joseph Catholic Church property, which includes the church, the school and the community center.
New parking spaces, electrical work, sidewalks and street pole installation will extend from Allen Street to Conant Street on the south side of West Broadway Street. Once that side is completed, the work will shift to the north side of the 100 block of West Broadway Street for similar work.
Several angled parking spaces will be created on more than half of the south side of the 100 block of West Broadway Street, extending from the corner of Allen Street eastward in front of both the St. Joseph Community Center and St. Joseph Catholic School.
In between the school entrance and the front entrance of St. Joseph Catholic Church, the angled parking will give way to parallel parking spaces, designed to accommodate the use of school buses, transport vehicles or hearses when funerals take place at the church.
Heading eastward past the church, West Broadway Street will widen to two lanes to accommodate traffic heading toward the intersection of Conant Street and West Broadway.
Angled parking is also planned for much of the east side of the 100 block of Allen Street, around the corner from West Broadway Street and close in proximity to the St. Joseph Community Center.
In the 100 block of East Broadway Street, angled parking will also be introduced with a mix of parallel parking spaces located directly in front of Union School to accommodate buses and other transport vehicles that may require more space.
Maumee city administrator Dr. Patrick Burtch said that three of the existing trees along the south side of the 100 block of East Broadway Street will be preserved with a bump-out area near the corner of East Broadway and Gibbs streets.
Burtch also explained that the city had an abundance of decorative streetlight poles along the 100 block of East Dudley Street and some of those poles will be relocated to the 100 blocks of both East and West Broadway streets to provide additional street lighting.
At the same time the city is busy working on the uptown streetscape project in the 100 block of East Broadway Street, Maumee City Schools is overseeing a major renovation project directly in front of Union School, replacing the existing parking lot area located on the school grounds with a new interactive playground facility for the benefit of the preschool students who now attend Union School.
The project will also include new sidewalks and landscaping, as well as the installation of attractive black fencing to replace the unsightly chain link fencing that has existed at Union School for the past several years.
The engineering and design services for the Union School project are being provided by Buehrer Group Architecture & Engineering Inc. and the construction work is being performed by Midwest Contracting Inc.
Burtch stated that he and other Maumee city officials are meeting on a regular basis with the principal parties of the Union School project to keep the lines of communication open as the groups coordinate their efforts to ensure that the two concurrent projects run smoothly.
While acknowledging that the two-week Columbia Gas parts shortage delay threw both Broadway projects behind schedule, Burtch said, “We are doing everything in our power to get this project done before school starts on August 25.”