For those wondering about some big road projects promised this year in Harrisburg, city officials have this message—your wait is almost over.
City Engineer Wayne Martin said yesterday that residents should remain braced for widespread roadwork, especially along the important 3rd Street corridor.
“[Construction work] is about a month behind, but will be ready to go out for bid this week,” Martin said.
He said that the 3rd Street project has been delayed because the city needed to coordinate with Capital Region Water, which is installing new drainage pipes, before contractors can begin the milling, paving and intersection improvements. He expects roadwork to start in late August at multiple locations along 3rd Street from Chestnut Street downtown to Muench Street in Midtown and then, Uptown, from Maclay to Seneca streets.
The project will continue throughout much of 2018, he said. Paving will cease once the weather gets cold, from November through March. However, concrete work—new curbs, walks and ramps at each intersection—will pause only for the worst winter months of January and February.
The 3rd Street project also will include 165 ADA-compliant ramps, green infrastructure elements, safety improvements, traffic signal upgrades and select streetlight pole replacements, Martin said. It’s funded with a $6 million grant from Impact Harrisburg, along with a matching $10 million PennDOT grant.
Also in the fall, work is set to begin on the repaving of Industrial Road from Cameron Street to Linglestown Road. The $3.9 million, federally funded project will lay new asphalt over the existing surface, though some milling will occur on bridges, which cannot handle the weight of additional pavement, Martin said.
Smaller projects, which have already started, include maintenance efforts on Reily Street in Midtown, Market Street downtown and Hanover Street and S. 13th streets in South Harrisburg. This roadwork mostly includes patching and selective paving, Martin said. Line-painting also will commence soon along several major thoroughfares, including Maclay Street, S. 13th Street, S. 17th Street and Rudy Road.
In yet another initiative, Mechanicsburg-based Delta Development is conducting a “Bus Stop Optimization” study, Martin said. This could lead to changes where some bus stops are located.
And what about the eagerly anticipated project that will allow N. 2nd Street to return to two-way traffic? It continues to creep forward, Martin said. The city right now is soliciting “letters of interest” from qualified design firms.
“There are so many moving parts to this,” he said. “We need to select a design professional who can move the project forward.”
Besides redesigning 2nd Street north of Forster Street, the project would make significant improvements to Forster, N. 7th and Division streets. Martin explained that this work, which may include everything from lane changes and additional traffic signals to safety improvements and new roundabouts, will require significant coordination over several years.
Another major project on the books is not for a street, but a sidewalk. Earlier this year, the city received a $1 million federal grant to repave the badly damaged river walk along the Susquehanna River. This project includes replacing the concrete for the walk and the top step.
According to Martin, the river walk will be a 2018 project, as the city needs to obtain a clearance from Norfolk Southern Railway and undergo a permitting process with the state Department of Environmental Protection.
Author: Lawrance Binda