City paving about to start; curb projects underway

JANELLE PATTERSON The Marietta Times City Engineer Joe Tucker, center, reviews the needs of handicap accessibility on the sidewalk at the corner of Vine Street and Euclid Place Thursday with Shelly and Sands Paving as Councilwoman Kathy Downer and Project Manager Dave Hendrickson discuss upcoming paving.

With 2018 curb ramp upgrades and paving underway in Marietta, City Engineer Joe Tucker is already looking ahead to future years.

“I’m not only trying to bring back roads that have failed but plan for the preventative maintenance needed to keep the overall quality of our road inventory in good condition,” said Tucker.

The city’s upgrades began this month after Ohio Public Works Commission grant funds, totaling $400,000, were released July 2. First, 18 ADA curb ramps saw upgrades to meet handicap-standard compliance and next milling and paving will begin.

The total is projected to cost $545,000, following a change order discussion Wednesday to add the repaving of the corner of Gilman Avenue and Virginia Street to the 16-road plan for the year.

The corner added an additional $5,000 worth of work to repave over a reconstructed sewer main, where a sinkhole took the roads out of commission following flooding in February.

“But that’s not money coming out of our tight streets budget,” explained Streets Committee Chairwoman Kathy Downer.

On Thursday, Downer, Tucker and Project Manager Dave Hendrickson visited the corner of Vine Street and Euclid Place in Norwood to talk with Shelly and Sands Paving about handicap-accessibility needs with the curb ramps before Vine Street gets paved from Greene to Spring.

“I’m really glad they’re keeping an eye on this as the work goes and we keep inspections before the work is done,” noted Downer. “That’s the responsible thing to do since it’s taxpayer’s money, and our curb ramps are one of the only things eligible for (Community Development Block Grant, federal) funds.”

Hendrickson confirmed with Shelly and Sands that milling will begin Thursday for two days and then paving should begin the Tuesday after Labor Day.

“But we have to be mindful of the sternwheel festival too,” he noted. “We can’t have high traffic roads closed with all of the people that come in for that.”

However, regardless of the festival or next week’s county fair, the end date for construction is Sept. 28, and Tucker said he plans to hold the project to that.

Hendrickson noted other timing restrictions that will be worked around include the bus schedule for Marietta High School and student drivers as Davis Avenue and Colegate Drive are paved this year.

Shade Street, Fearing Street and Dudley Avenue are all roads also slated for this year’s paving which are considered on the city’s pavement management system to have failed or be in very poor condition.

There are also slippage issues on Channel Lane and Hillcrest Lane to be addressed.

Hillcrest has been on the city’s radar for more than a year, Tucker explained. But funding still hasn’t been released from the OPWC’s emergency funds to address the $189,300 project.

Channel Lane was finally approved for funding July 3, after the state’s new fiscal year began.

“And we submitted that request after the slip started in February, but they had so many requests after that rain event with slips not only across our county but others this money wasn’t available earlier,” Tucker added.

The 205-foot retaining wall to go into the hillside should stabilize the slip and allow for a new roadway and guardrail to be installed by the end of October, for a total cost of $81,540.

“That’s 90 percent funded through OPWC, but it draws down from our streets budget which predominately comes from city income tax,” said Tucker. “So as we look to other real projects and what the public expects us to maintain I hope they understand that real impact.”

Meanwhile, Wednesday Marietta City Council authorized the administration to apply for grant funding for the 2019 roads. Tucker explained that included in the plan are options for additional roads which need to be paved but could only be done if the income tax increase from 1.7 percent to 1.85 percent passes in November and the additional funding for streets is put in place.

In addition to the planned paving of Fourth Street, Seventh Street, Washington Street, Cisler Drive, East Eighth Street and the upper portion of Lancaster Street’s hill from Douglas Avenue to Alta Street, added revenue from city income taxes could leverage more grant money to cover Lancaster’s lower hill from Fort Harmar Drive to Douglas Avenue, Westview Avenue from Gilman to the corporation limit or East Eighth Street from the River Trail to Wayne Street.

Lancaster Street’s improvements consider additional stabilization of the road to prevent slippage by addressing needed drainage upgrades, but the estimated $504,850 project requires funding not only from regional sources like the Wood-Washington-Wirt Interstate Planning Commission, but the local match to leverage federal dollars and Ohio Department of Transportation blessing over the rerouting needed for Ohio 676. The needed local share for that project is $97,350. The anticipated completion date if all funding is in place would be October 2019.

At a glance:

• Streets to be milled and paved by the end of September:

• Aurora Street from Shade to Sunset.

• Shade Street from Aurora to the dead end.

• Capt. D. Seeley-MIA Drive from Pike Street to private property.

• Colegate Drive from Woodcrest to Academy.

• Davis Avenue from Lee to the school entrance.

• Dudley Avenue from Quarry to Cedar.

• Fearing Street from Pearl to Clinton.

• Fort Square from Market to Fort.

• Gilman Avenue from Putnam to Market.

• Grant Edwards Drive from Belle Meadow to Glendale.

• South Hart Street from Fourth to Sixth.

• Lancaster Street from Pershing to Gates.

• Market Street from Gilman to Fort Square.

• Vine Street from Greene to Spring.

• Wayne Street from Eighth to Pike.

• Corner of Gilman and Virginia streets.

• River Trail, behind the Wastewater Treatment Plant.

• Milling is scheduled for Thursday and Friday next week.

• Paving is scheduled to begin the first week in September.