Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Downtown construction this year will involve a lot of juggling

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By KEVIN NEVERS

A clearer picture is slowly developing of what the Downtown is going to look like this construction season.

Put it this way: Chesterton Town Engineer Mark O’Dell and John Schnadenberg will need to be pretty good jugglers, because they’ll be keeping a lot of balls in the air well into the fall.

At the Chesterton Redevelopment Commission’s meeting Monday night, O’Dell said that every effort is being made to coordinate the work schedule to minimize as much as possible all inconvenience to the businesses in the Downtown. But he acknowledged that there will be some inconvenience.

The latest information:

•The Downtown sewer separation and replacement project has been officially divided into two phases. Phase I, beginning probably in mid April, will involve the separation of sanitary and stormwater sewers and the installation of a new sanitary line beneath South Calumet Road from the Norfolk Southern grade-crossing to West Indiana Ave. It will not be physically possible to complete Phase I by Memorial Day, May 31, O’Dell said, but it should be done by mid June.

•Phase II of the project will involve only the installation of a new stormwater sewer beneath South Calumet Road from Morgan Ave. to Porter Ave. After discussions with some of the business owners along this stretch of South Calumet Road—including the operator of the Lucrezia restaurant, whose busiest months of the year are July and August—this phase will commence sometime in the fall, O’Dell said.

•Compounding the inconvenience to Lucrezia will be an entirely separate project: the installation of a new sanitary force main between West Porter Ave. from a point just west of South Calumet Road to Fifth Street. Although this project will not necessitate the closure of the intersection of South Calumet Road and Porter Ave. and should be completed within a couple of weeks, O’Dell said, there will be excavation in the westbound lane of West Porter Ave., adjacent to Lucrezia, for a few days. This project has not been scheduled yet.

•Schnadenberg is also eyeing some paving in the Downtown this season, chiefly Broadway between South Calumet Road and Fourth Street and Second and Third streets between Broadway and West Indiana Ave. But Schnadenberg would also like to pave those portions of South Calumet Road which will not be excavated this year as part of the sewer separation and replacement project. Those portions to go under the knife will be paved as a matter of course, and Schnadenberg wants to make the road surfaces uniform. Estimated cost: $200,000 or less. The commission took under advisement his request to use tax increment financing funds for the work.

South Calumet District Project

Meanwhile, the commission continues to mull what has been dubbed Phase II of the South Calumet District project and would involve street- and landscaping improvements along South Calumet Road roughly from the Chesterton Post Office to the intersection of Porter Ave.

At a minimum new decorative streetlighting and sidewalks could be installed as part of this project. But members are also considering improvements to the unaligned intersection of South Calumet Road and Porter Ave., possibly only improved lighting but conceivably—if right-of-way were to be acquired—some attempt at alignment.

O’Dell said that he needs to work with Town Attorney Chuck Lukmann on the scope of Phase II.

“We need to expand the improvements through the retail district so people want to re-locate to town,” Member Sharon Darnell said.

It’s unclear when exactly Phase II would begin.

Members did vote 4-0 to approve an expenditure of around $6,500 to add two more illuminated street signs at the intersection of 100E and 1100N. Member Mark Singer was not in attendance.

Claims

Members voted 4-0 to approve the following claims: $10,421.74 from DLZ, the contracted engineer for the South Calumet District project; $63,901.27 from G.E. Marshall, the general contractor for the project; $175,278.75 from UMB Bank, for a bond payment on the project; and $687.50 from Harris Welsh & Lukmann

 

Posted 1/27/2010

 

 

 

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