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Main Street detour starts this week PDF Print E-mail
Written by MITCH MAERSCH   
Wednesday, 12 July 2017 17:35

First of two-phased $6.9 million reconstruction project expected to be completed by mid-October

Driving through the heart of the Village of Belgium won’t be the same for the next few months. After prep work was completed this spring, the first phase of the Main Street reconstruction project was expected to start Thursday with milling, Village Director of Public Works Dan Birenbaum said.
The project’s first phase runs from Beech Street east to Highway LL. Barricades stopping traffic from heading west on Main Street from the LL intersection went up this week, Birenbaum said.
“Semis are following the detour already, the general public is not yet,” he said. “They should just start using the detour.”
From the east, the detour route has traffic heading south on LL, then east to Highway A and north on Highway KW back to Main Street.
On Monday, crews are expected to start storm sewer work at Michael Street and work east to LL, Birenbaum said. That portion of the road is expected to be done by mid-August, Birenbaum said.
After that, work will start from Micheal Street west to Beech Street, which is slated to be done by mid-October.
“Local traffic they’re going to keep trying to let through,” Birenbaum said, adding “At some point in time there won’t be a road to go through.”
Homeowners are expected to maintain access to their driveways throughout the project. At most, Birenbaum said their driveways would be blocked for one day, and residents would be notified the day before.
Weekly meetings will be held with the general contractor, Vinton Construction Co. of Manitowoc, with updates to be put on the village’s website, Birenbaum said.
The Village Board in April unanimously approved borrowing $4.3 million for its portion of the Main Street reconstruction project.
Overall borrowing costs are $125,000 less than estimated, mostly due to securing a lower interest rate than expected. The true rate is 3.2562% on the 20-year loan. The winning bidder was Bok Financial Securities Inc. of Milwaukee.
Designs call for limited parking on Main Street to accommodate a five-foot bike lane, required because the project is partly being paid for with federal funds.
From the west village limits to Elevator Lane, parking would be allowed on the north side of the street only. From Elevator Lane to Oak Street, parking would be allowed on both sides of the street. From Oak to Lar Ann streets, parking would be on the north side only. No parking would be allowed on  a one-block stretch from Lar Ann to Highway LL.
Also included is upgraded lighting, which is slated to cost around $600,000.
The project cost is $6.9 million. State and federal grants pay 80% of the cost with the county and village splitting the remaining 20%.
Cost of the project increased from an early estimate of $4.2 million to $6.9 million. Given the updated cost estimate, the state at first balked at its commitment to cover 80% of the project.
Phase 2 of the project is scheduled to be done next spring from Beech Street west to the village limits.

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