Summer’s here and that means more than longer days and fun in the sun — it also means road projects will be in full swing.
According to Department of Transportation Spokesman Jeremy Woodrow, the Riverside Drive project is focused on rehabilitation and maintenance of the high-traffic road, with a couple additional improvements.
“The department tries to get to roads and rehab them before they get to the point of failure,” Woodrow said, in case some are wondering why Riverside is being repaved after only a few years. “We want to keep the road in good condition, do maintenance on them before you get failure. It’s much cheaper than having to redo the whole road.”
In addition to repaving, Riverside is getting pedestrian islands and new curbs and gutters.
The project, which was scheduled to start on April 14, should be done by mid-July, with paving and striping being the last tasks.
“Most of the work is during the nighttime, starting evenings after the nightly commute and trying to wrap up before the morning commute,” Woodrow said. “There may be some utility work during the day, but that shouldn’t affect traffic too much.”
Contractor SeCon was awarded the bid around $1.45 million. The total project cost with environmental utility work is about $2.5 million.
For those with graduating Thunder Mountain High School students, Woodrow said the crews won’t be working that Sunday so there shouldn’t be a conflict with the school’s commencement ceremony.
Another notable construction zone is Third Street downtown between Franklin and Gold, a project of the City and Borough of Juneau. Street Superintendent Ed Foster said they are reconstructing the street and replacing utilities.
“It was just a bad section of street that needed to be repaired,” Foster said.
The street will be resurfaced and outdated utilities will be replaced. According to the CBJ website, the project is slated to wrap up on May 15.
The project was awarded to Admiralty Construction, Inc. and will cost about $217,468.
Other road projects
Other projects underway include the Auke Bay roundabout, which Woodrow said would hopefully be completed this summer, and lighting along Egan Drive.
More projects will begin this summer, including the Brotherhood Bridge project, which should break ground next week, Woodrow said, and a resurfacing project on North Douglas Highway. The North Douglas project does not yet have a start date.
The Brotherhood Bridge project will begin with clearing the area, then poles will be driven beginning in either late May or early June. Woodrow said there shouldn’t be much of an impact on traffic during that portion of the estimated two-year project.
Orion Marine Contractors, Inc., was awarded the $25 million project.
“This is going to be a big improvement to what’s there right now,” Woodrow said. “ “The new road is going to be four lanes and a separated multi-use path along one side to connect bike paths from both sides of the river.”
He said the multi-use path would be similar to that of the Juneau-Douglas Bridge.
There will also be access on both sides under the bridge so pedestrians and bikers don’t have to cross traffic.
“There will be major improvements for movement of traffic and movement of pedestrians and bicycles,” Woodrow said.
Woodrow’s parting words were to ask that drivers be wary of construction signs, workers in those areas and to slow down when in construction zones. “It’s for their safety and the safety of the men and women at work.”