Niles officials breathe sigh of relief as big step in construction accomplished

Published 11:51 pm Thursday, August 26, 2004

By By SPIROS GALLOS / Niles Daily Star
NILES - Niles City officials were a little anxious Wednesday morning as they waited for the trucks that would pour the asphalt for the intersection at Main and Front streets.
Croteau, director of the Niles Downtown Development Authority, said when the trucks arrived around 1:30 p.m. everyone breathed a sigh of relief.
Public Works Director Neil Coulston said while there was no official time for the trucks to be downtown, he was just happy they got there.
The busy intersection of Main and Front streets, which is part of the city's downtown streetscape project, should be open for traffic Friday, Croteau said.
The streets leading into the intersection will be slightly lower than the intersection itself, creating a "tabled intersection."
The asphalt work will continue through most of Thursday and the city hopes to have traffic moving down Main Street no later than Friday evening, weather permitting, Coulston said.
Though Main street will be opened to traffic, the construction isn't done yet.
Monday, crews will begin sidewalk removal and curb replacement work on Main street.
After the curbs are in place, planters will be installed and water and electrical utilities work will be completed, Coulston said.
Heated sidewalk material will be installed where business owners have requested and paid for it, light bases will be poured, and finally brick will be laid for the sidewalk.
The streetscape project is expected to be completed in the eight weeks, possibly earlier, Coulston said.
Traffic will be maintained in both directions during the curb and sidewalk work, but there will continue to be delays until the project is completed, according to Coulston.
The construction on Sycamore street, which is part of the Combined Sewer Overflow project, should be completed soon as well.
Crews are currently replacing curbs and sidewalks where they were removed for the project and paving is to follow.
The contractor, Harglo Construction, has indicated that within the
next week they should be done.
Another contractor will need to come in and resurface Front street from Main to Sycamore, Sycamore street from Front to east of Fourth, and Third and Fourth from Sycamore to Main, Coulston said.
Second street from Sycamore to Main will be paved once all curbs and
sidewalks have been replaced, which likely won't happen for several weeks. That work will be done by the streetscape contractor, Pioneer Associates,Coulston said.
Throughout the streetscape project the city has encountered problems with elevation conflicts of water mains, electrical conduits and gas mains, but Coulston thinks the project can be completed in time.