Churton Street Project Update — June 16, 2017
Friday, June 16, 2017
Much progress was made on downtown Churton Street access improvements this week, and crews will work Saturdays to keep the project on schedule.
Stormwater piping, rough grading and a first layer of asphalt were completed at the site of a new bus pull-off area adjacent to the Orange County Courthouse. Next steps in this part of the project include pouring a curb and gutter and framing a sidewalk along South Churton Street from the Nash and Kollock Street intersection to the existing sidewalk beside the courthouse.
Crews are in the process of demolishing existing handicapped-access ramps on the east side of South Churton Street at East Margaret Lane and East King and East Tryon streets. Temporary gravel ramps will be created to maintain access, and when all of the new east side access ramps and the bus pull-off area sidewalk have been framed, concrete will be poured.
Next week, workers will begin work in the downtown commercial core by demolishing the existing sidewalk on the west side of North Churton Street between West King Street and Brick Alley. New catch basins and stormwater pipes will be installed in this area before a new sidewalk is poured. Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant handicapped-access ramps will be installed, and the sidewalk will be extended to improve access on the street-facing side of existing trees. Pedestrian access to businesses will be maintained, but portions of sidewalk may be closed at times, with construction fencing, traffic cones and signs used to designate closed areas.
“We’ve gone to great lengths to ensure access to all of our downtown businesses while construction is underway, and I encourage people to keep patronizing our local eateries and shops throughout the summer,” said Mayor Tom Stevens. “Especially for those who value local establishments, a bit of construction hassle doesn’t have to get in the way of having a good experience downtown.”
The town also plans to close parking spaces in the town parking lot along the north wall of the Mercantile Center next week. The spaces are needed for construction staging and material and equipment storage, but the town will make every effort to keep open any spaces not needed by contractors.
Construction crews will continue to use flaggers and lane shifts as they work on the edge of the right-of-way. During weekdays, lane shifts and lane closings are limited to 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. to accommodate rush-hour traffic.
Citizens are reminded to observe safety signs and to stay clear of construction areas. Also, downtown businesses are open and access to them is being maintained.
The Churton Street Access Improvements Project is a partnership between the town and the N.C. Department of Transportation, with much of the funding coming from state and federal sources. The project corridor is within the right-of-way for Churton Street, which is maintained by the state.
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