Julie Beaton, the city’s project manager who has overseen the street reconstruction, said the barricades, construction barrels, temporary signs and sand bags will be removed this coming Monday, Aug. 29.
“Once they are done, the Grand Avenue phase 1 construction limits will be open to all two-way traffic,” she said.
Beaton noted that while Monday is the date the barricades come down, the process might not happen immediately. It depends on when the company’s crews can get to the site. But, she said, the road should be open by the end of the day.
The street will remain one-way for westbound traffic only — for cars with decals noting their residency in the work zone — for the balance of this week and the weekend, Beaton noted. This will ensure that final site restoration, electrical, site cleanup and other miscellaneous construction-related items that require use of the roadway can be completed, she said.
“When you see the barricades and detour signs, then you’ll know you can’t drive through yet,” Beaton said.
Additionally, Beaton said the completion of punch-list items will likely extend beyond Monday, but the work will be minimally disruptive to traffic.
Residents living along Grand Avenue will have a reprieve of several months from construction activities until the project’s second phase begins.
“Currently, phase 2 is scheduled to begin next spring, (beginning) the end of March or early April,” Beaton said.
The second phase of the project will stretch from where the first phase ended at Doris Avenue to Sheldon Road. The Michigan Department of Transportation will do the bidding for the work toward the end of the year, Beaton said.
“Honestly, I think it could take a little bit longer because we have more work to do,” Beaton said, noting there are more homes in the stretch of road for phase 2. “We have more of everything in that phase.”
In the meantime, city officials plan to look at how the traffic was managed during the first phase, and identify ways it could be tweaked.
“We are doing that right now, and how we want to tackle that project,” Beaton said. “We’re definitely figuring out different ideas for managing traffic for phase 2.”