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Water Project Street Paving Update

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The following message is from Aaron Carr of A. Lindberg and Sons:

Due to a dispute–now resolved– between MITA and the Operators union, there is a backlog of paving work. The backlog has impacted ALS’s ability to complete work in the City. Due to the uncertainty of paving subcontractors to complete work before winter, we have decided the best course of action is to hold off further excavation work on Washington Street until 2019. Work was originally scheduled and posted to begin Sept 4th in this area, this was also the day that MITA began their lockout of the Operators Union and we were informed by our Subcontractor that all paving schedules were suspended until further notice.

Unfortunately, further work now would risks Washington Street being in worse condition this winter and spring. The pulverized blacktop lane has the best chance at holding up and being maintained over the winter due to the undisturbed material and underlying roadbed. To dig in this area now will cause significantly increased hazards and maintenance to keep this area passable over winter. Additionally, construction would have also added numerous water service trenches cut across the other lane that would be extremely difficult to maintain and add hazards to city plows. This has been a very trying and difficult situation to manage.

The situation between MITA and the Operators has affected hundreds of different jobs across the state. It has forced us to change our approach to the end of this construction season with focus on attempting to limit the potential winter hazards for the City, its people, and this project. Many difficult decisions had to be made. Even with the call back to work as of Friday Sept 28th of operators across the state, the situation is beyond recovery due to the huge backlog of state and federal projects to catch up.

Our focus is now on quickly preparing work areas for safety during the approaching winter. We are hopeful to finish up the currently disturbed areas in the 8th edition as well as the Cleveland location and cover them with blacktop as soon as possible. Unfortunately, Washington Street as well as– potential some other areas– may be left without paving for the year. We are going to provide maintenance on all of these areas throughout the winter and spring and have since began a schedule of weekly attention the Washington Street area. If more than weekly is required it will be provided. Work will commence again on this area as soon as weather allows us in 2019.

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