Motorists are keenly aware that Main Street road construction has commenced in Lamar. The long-anticipated and discussed renovation project got underway on two fronts; the railroad crossing dividing North and South Main Street and what is termed Phase I between Park and Oak Streets.
A drainage line is being constructed underneath the railroad tracks and is expected to run through February. Phase 1, also in progress, will continue until mid-May of this year and has four projects broken into four timelines. Streetlights and a waterline will take an estimated 10 weeks, paving and curb and gutter work on the east and west sides of this stretch of roadway will take four weeks each and paving will take approximately two weeks.
The second phase will be a duplicate of the first with identical projects running between Oak and Beech Streets from mid-May until completion by September of this year. It’s estimated to take ten weeks to complete Phase 2. The construction work is moving from south to north until its completion at the Lamar Canal. Phase 3 will move from Beech Street to Maple Street beginning in September and it is expected that there will be a winter break as the weather becomes too cold for construction to continue. There is no specific date set for the end of this phase or when it will resume, but an end date for May, 2018 has been given. The fourth and final phase will begin in May of that year and will be completed by December 2018 with the remaining work between Maple Street and the canal.
American Civil Constructors, the firm handling the project, held a public information meeting on January 19th when they laid out the scope of the project for concerned citizens and the approximate timeline. This first phase will see the median along Main Street removed and the street lights will be repositioned on the sidewalks. The City of Lamar is also coordinating with the construction to complete an overhaul of the water and electric infrastructure under the highway. Aging water pipes have been breaking open with some degree of irritating regularity for work crews and motorists alike. As the new overlay will be concrete, not asphalt once the roadwork is completed; it would be more costly to have to dig up 80 year old pipes for repairs or replacement.
By Russ Baldwin
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