A $7.1 million intersection improvement project at SOM Center and Aurora roads continues to see progress, with all of the storm sewer work expected to be complete this week.
Construction project administrator Dan Driscoll said most of the storm sewer work is on SOM Center Road, just south of Aurora Road. The storm sewer replaces an old and failing system.
After completing the underground work, the night crews will begin restoring some of the trenches in the pavement area, in particular up SOM Center Road on the curb lane in front of Dunkin Donuts and Arby’s.
Mr. Driscoll said that area will eventually get more permanently restored with a concrete base and asphalt top as will all the trenches crossing the intersection.
Day crews still are plugging away at the sidewalks, curbs and apron restoration on the north side of Aurora Road, Mr. Driscoll continued.
In about another week, the contractor will begin widening the intersection, which means zones will be put in place to maneuver traffic. The paving and widening work will take place on the east side of SOM and north side Aurora Road.
“Things are proceeding, and the contractor is on schedule, which is a good sign,” Mr. Driscoll said.
Substantial completion of the project is scheduled for the end of November.
This week, Mr. Driscoll said discussion will take place involving the timing for the new phase of work. While most of the work thus far has taken place at night so as not to impede traffic, Mr. Driscoll said he foresees both day and night work moving forward.
The intersection improvement project involves widening on the east side of SOM only to remove the split phased left turns on SOM as well as on the north side of Aurora Road to add an additional through lane in the west bound direction. The result will be improved traffic flow in what is considered one of the city’s busiest intersections.
The city has been granted funding for 90 percent of the eligible construction costs up to a maximum of $1.449 million and 85 percent of the eligible traffic signal related construction costs up to a maximum of $192,600.
The city’s share of the project, including 100 percent of the recommended alternates, will be $4.939 million.
Despite the significant impact on traffic in the area, City Engineer John J. Busch said the improvements will be well worth it at the end.