With a multitude of street and/or utility work already occurring in the Mount Airy area, another major undertaking soon will be added to the list — one that will have lingering effects on travel conditions.
It is a $480,000 water and sewer rehabilitation project along East Church Street to start in September or thereabouts. It is planned as part of ongoing efforts to replace Mount Airy’s aging utility infrastructure.
The purpose of the upcoming project is to replace a 6-inch cast-iron water line that has suffered several recent failures along East Church Street from South Main Street to the dead end of East Church. In addition, sewer lines in the same area which are in need of repair will be replaced, and storm-drainage work also is to be part of the mix.
While digging deep ditches for new pipes can be upheaval enough for a neighborhood, the upcoming project also will impact travel in the affected area. That’s because of pavement being ripped up as part of the work, which won’t be returned to pristine condition anytime soon.
“It will be a mess for a while,” city Public Works Director Jeff Boyles warned during a meeting earlier this month when various utility projects were discussed. Sections of East Church Street which are disturbed will not be put back into good shape by winter, Boyles explained.
That is due to the 120-day timetable for the work, which will push it past the Dec. 15 date when asphalt plants typically close for the season due to insufficient demand to justify the costs of keeping those facilities running.
Boyles said crews will do what they can to get the street back in order with that time issue looming. “We’ll patch as much as we can up to Dec. 15.”
The contract for the water/sewer rehab work on East Church Street was awarded in mid-June to Steve Tate & Son Inc. of Mount Airy by the city board of commissioners.
That company was the low bidder for the project at $439,460 and in addition to that sum, the commissioners’ action included contingency funding for any unexpected needs arising during construction.
This pushed the total allocation for the municipal-funded project to $480,000.
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.