MUSCATINE, Iowa – A hard close was established at the intersection of Linn Street and Mississippi Drive this week as construction crews prepare to continue sanitary sewer work west on Mississippi Drive. The result of the hard close is that there is no through traffic into the downtown are along the Mississippi River, but access is still available to all businesses on Mississippi Dive and connected side streets.
Owners of affected businesses were updated on the Mississippi Drive Reconstruction project during a meeting Thursday morning (Sept. 7) at Contrary Brewing Co. with Bill Haag, project manager for the City of Muscatine, and Lucas Kluever, owner of KE Flatworks, the prime contractor for the project.
KMA Excavating, the underground sub-contractor for the Mississippi Drive Reconstruction Project, is close to wrapping up work in the block from Pine to Linn streets and ready to proceed with sanitary sewer work west on Mississippi Drive. The hard close at Linn Street will remain in effect for the next two-to-three months until the contractor feels it is safe to open Mississippi Drive east of the bluffs to Iowa Avenue.
“While there is no through traffic, traffic will be allowed around the barricades at Broadway and at the #1 Alley on Pine Street for access to the businesses located from Linn to the bluffs,” Haag said. “It has always been a top priority for the City to maintain access as much as possible for all of the businesses along Mississippi Drive during this project.”
Parking remains available on Linn Street with a pedestrian crossing established at the Linn Street intersection for patrons of Contrary Brewing, Clamshell, Nutrition Outlet, and Escape Organic Salon. Access to these businesses parking areas will be available from the west on Mississippi Drive until construction crews reach the bluff area.
KE Flatworks has been working on pouring concrete from Iowa to Chestnut streets, have completed the east bound lane from Pine to Chestnut, while also working on sidewalks and installing brick pavers in the Iowa Avenue intersection and in the median between Iowa and Chestnut. Grading of the eastbound section of Chestnut to Pine is almost complete and grading of Pine to Linn streets will begin once the underground work is completed.
One of the goals is to open up the Iowa Avenue intersection into Riverside Park as soon as the Canadian Pacific Rail Road crossing can be completed. However, that work is not expected to wrap up until CPRR installs the new “Quiet Zone” crossing arms in October.
Also scheduled in October is completing Chestnut Street from Mississippi Drive to the #1 Alley and the completion of the drop off lane for the new Merrill Hotel & Conference Center which runs from the Mississippi Drive side and up Chestnut Street.
Another goal is to have Mississippi Drive completed from Iowa to Broadway by the end of November.
“We have made good progress with the good weather that we have had but we need more good weather and time to make sure we achieve that goal,” Kluever said. “Ideally we will be down to landscaping by that time.”
Haag noted that the work that has been done is giving citizens a good idea of just what the reconstructed street will look like when completed.
“It is going to a remarkable street that will be a great asset to Muscatine,” Haag said.
KENT STEIN TO DEEP LAKES TRAIL
The Kent Stein to Deep Lakes Park Trail (also known as the Wiggens Road Trail) is seeing lots of action this week with completion of the four-mile trail still on schedule for the end of September. The portion through Deep Lakes Park from 41st Street to 57th Street has been completed. Asphalt paving has been completed along Stewart Road with the expectation that most of the paving will be completed to the trail head at Kent Stein Park by next week.
All-American Concrete is currently pouring concrete on the portion of the trail that runs through the Hahn property from 33rd Street to Dick Drake Way. Grading of the shoulders will continue for the next several weeks along with pouring concrete with detectable pedestrian warnings at the intersections with roadways.
Illowa Investment, Inc., is the general contractor for the four-mile trail from Kent Stein Park to Deep Lakes Park. Walkers, runners, and bicycle riders are asked to stay off the new trail at the present time as construction continues. The project has a completion date of Sept. 30. A ribbon cutting ceremony to mark the opening of the trail will be scheduled after the work has been completed.
CLEVELAND STREET RECONSTRUCTION PROJECT
The first phase of the Cleveland Street Reconstruction Project should be completed by next week. The first phase replaces the section from Park Avenue to just east of the Cleveland Street west entrance to the McDonald’s Restaurant. Most of the concrete work has been completed with pouring driveways to be finished by the end of the week.
“If that can be done and the concrete can cure over the weekend then we might be able to open up that section next Monday,” Haag said. “But it may be more towards the middle of the week depending on how testing goes.”
The second phase will be from 2nd Avenue to just west of the east entrance to the apartment complex on Cleveland Street. The third and fourth phases will complete the middle portion of the reconstruction project from McDonald’s west and then from the Car Wash east.
All American Concrete of West Liberty, Iowa, was awarded the project which will remove and replace the existing concrete. Portions of the street will be closed to traffic at different times during the project but access will be provided to businesses at all times.
WEST HILL SEWER SEPARATION PROJECT
Work on the West Hill Sewer Separation Project around the 4th Street Park area is wrapping up according to city inspector Steve Dalbey.
Haggerty Earthworks has finished all of the sewer work in the 4th Street Park area except for a short run on Cherry at West 4th Street. That work will be done very soon. The intersection of Cherry and West 4th Street was closed but is expected to be open by the end of the week. Area residents will be updated frequently on the status of the intersection as it is a fluid situation at the present time.
The paving contractor, Heuer Construction, is finishing the concrete work on Broadway at the #3 and #4 alleys on the east (lower) side of the park. West 4th between Locust and the park, and Broadway between the #3 and #4 alleys will be opened up to local traffic incrementally as the paving and dirt work are accomplished.
Sewer work on West 5th will likely begin within the next week or two.
West Hill Sewer Separation Project