MAIN STREET NEARING COMPLETION
JEREMY WALTNER – EDITOR & PUBLISHER
This week, for the first time since early May, those passing through Freeman’s downtown business will be able to drive the entire stretch of Main Street. That’s because concrete work on the roadway from Railway Street to the North County Road, as well as curbs and sidewalks, was completed on Monday, Oct. 24.
While approaches at the west/east intersections north of Railway still need to be poured and were closed to traffic as of Wednesday morning, Paul Korn of engineering firm Sayre Associates called Monday a milestone.
“Concrete work is winding down,” Korn told The Courier on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, four blocks of roadway adjacent to Main Street, on Third and Fourth streets one block west and east of Main, remain closed to traffic as workers pour curbs and sidewalks in anticipation of pavement work in the next week to two weeks to come.
All that will remain is the permanent historic lighting fixtures, which should be installed sometime next spring.
“The project completion date was Nov. 5 and I’m optimistic that by a week later we’ll have everything completed and opened up to traffic,” said Korn, who notes the cement shortage and subsequent rationing has impacted the project, albeit it at a minor level. “To some degree, yes. There have been times where the allocation of cement had resulted in a contractor not getting the amount he needed for the work he wanted to perform on a specific day. But we have been able to work around it and get the work done that needed to be done.”
And while Korn acknowledges the road closures around the downtown area this summer and into the fall have been an inconvenience, he says it is simply a means to an end — and the project is turning out great.
“We appreciate people’s patience,” he said. “We’re really pleased with the workmanship and the quality of work the contractors are doing. We’re excited, like everyone in Freeman, to see it come to a completion.”