Nortonville drivers will have to find a new route
by Dennis Sharkey
Nortonville residents will have to find new routes for the next couple of months as a major road project finally begins.
Construction crews blocked off Osage Street last Thursday in preparation for a total makeover for the half-mile stretch of road through the town.
City Superintendent Larry Pruett told council members earlier this month that the road will have limited access throughout the term of the project for residents and no access for the general public. Pruett said there may be times when residents will not have access to driveways.
“There will be times where they absolutely can’t because they’re pouring concrete,” Pruett said. “But they are going to try to allow people to access their driveways as much as they can.”
City Clerk Barbara Polson said the project was originally slated to begin several months ago but was held up by the Kansas Department of Transportation because of funding shortages and the city to some extent while they were acquiring the necessary easements.
“I think people are ready for this project to take over,” Polson said.
Polson said the project will be more than just a new road surface. Years and years of road overlays have slowly eroded away the street’s curbing. The first phase of the project will be to install curbing and storm water guttering to help solve the biggest issue officials have with the roadway which is storm water run-off. Polson said the current state of the road allows for water to pool and collect. Some trees will be removed along the roadway and some regrading will also be done to affect the water flow.
The first phase of the project is supposed to be completed by Dec. 3. Pruett said the milling and overlay of the road may not happen until next spring, although the goal of the contractor is to complete the entire project this calendar year.
Polson said the project will not widen the street, but to residents it may appear to be wider once the curbing and landscaping is complete.
The council also discussed the possibility of paving a section of Hickory Street, which remains the only unpaved road in the city, in front of the cemetery to help alleviate storm water run-off that is causing problems for a business owner.
Pruett said the city received a bid from the same contractor performing the Osage project work for $17,000. Normally it cost about $10,000 to overlay a city block, however, there are increased costs because the street is not paved according to Pruett.
Councilman Matt Smith asked if there was a way to divert the water run-off into a ditch without spending money to pave a street. No one lives on the street.
Pruett said some rock work has been done to divert the water, however, the water is still finding its way around. No action was taken.
Short URL: http://www.jeffcountynews.com/?p=1724