Olentangy Valley News

Powell loosens purse strings for more road repairs

Extra $175K would add three roads to list of summer fix-ups

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Powell officials say they'll expand the city's road repair plan for 2013 to get ahead of schedule.

At a June 4 meeting, six Powell City Council members unanimously agreed the city should spend a little extra money to resurface three roads listed as "alternates" in this year's plan.

Councilwoman Sara Marie Brenner was absent.

If council approves the plan, the city will spend about $175,000 more -- on top of around $440,000 to $450,000 in regularly scheduled repairs -- to work on Woods Hollow Lane and Old Pond Lane in the Deer Run subdivision, as well as Cavanaugh Court in the Falcon Ridge subdivision.

The possibility for expanding the plan surfaced after a bid to complete all three alternate routes from one contractor came in lower than anticipated, representing a savings of $10,000 to $15,000 compared with quotes from two other contractors.

In recent years, Powell has struggled to keep up with wear and tear on local streets, so Councilman Tom Counts said this year could be a chance to play catch-up.

"We know that as we move forward, we're going to have a hard time keeping ahead of this game," Counts said. "This an opportunity to try to get ahead."

Mayor Richard Cline added: "It may not put us ahead of the game, but it puts us less behind in a game that we're losing."

Already set to see repairs this year are roads in the Grandshire, Golf Village and Falcon Ridge subdivisions.

The alternate routes would be first up for repairs next year if they aren't finished in 2013, said City Engineer Rob Rice.

Council's proposal was set to go to the city's finance committee Tuesday, June 11, when committee members were to make a recommendation about where in the city's budget the extra funds should come from.

Councilman Brian Lorenz said it's best to repair roads early, if the funds are available.

"I think the residents of those streets deserve to have that road maintenance," Lorenz said, "and who knows how much worse it's going to be after winter, and how much more the estimates are going to be next year?"

If the extra roads are added to the plan, however, it's unclear if the projects would be finished before Olentangy schools are back in session, particularly since school starts one week earlier than usual this year. That raises some safety concerns, Rice said.

"You might have kids going to catch the school bus and having asphalt trucks and construction going on," he said, "so the kids are trying to navigate through what is essentially a construction zone. It's not desirable."

Alternate routes aside, roads reconfirmed to receive crack sealing this year include Trail Lake Drive, North Bluff Lane, High Ground Court, Coldwater Drive, Linda Lou Way, Liberty Street North and Seldom Seen Road.

Set to be resurfaced this year are Whitaker Avenue South, Presidential Parkway, Valley Run Drive, Sycamore Ridge and Grandshire Drive, as well as a section of Liberty Street just north of the Four Corners intersection.

Some roads will receive spot repairs, including Tree Haven North and North Liberty Street, as well as the intersection of Liberty Street and Ridge Side Drive.

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