Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Another MDHA deadline missed in Salemtown

December 15 was supposed to be about the 4th or 5th completion date set during the last 3 years for MDHA and its private contractors to finally finish the block-grant-funded Salemtown streetscape. However, stretches of sidewalks are still being repoured and traffic signs are still being installed. Crews still have a way to go to finish.

As an elected member of the advisory committee working with MDHA for the last 4 years, I took it upon myself to do a quick survey yesterday, and I noted the following unfinished conditions in an e-mail to MDHA:

1) crosswalk stamps have yet to be painted

2) 3 lampposts are not functioning
  • Northeast corner of Garfield & 5th
  • Last post on north side of Garfield before Rosa Parks
  • Last post on south side of Garfield before Rosa Parks (behind the church, at the alley)
3) Crews have not cleaned dried cement splatters off of the lampposts wherever they repoured the sidewalks (some of the splatters are marble-sized concretions and difficult to knock off)

4) Long-damaged bulb at 5th & Hume (northeast corner) has not been repaired

5) Neighborhood ID sign at 3rd & Coffee is missing

6) "No truck" sign at 7th & Garfield stuck in the dirt on a traffic calming bump-out at the southwest corner. Construction crews merely filled the sidewalk curb with dirt and reseeded the spot where the sign used to stand.

7) Tree branches still rest on neighborhood ID sign at the corner of 3rd & Hume. Also, one of the lamp posts on the north side of Garfield between 5th and 6th was erected up into the branches of a tree, but branches are sitting on it and should have been trimmed back, lest strong winds damage the light.

8) Concrete still needs to be repoured up to both alley heads on Garfield between 5th & 6th.

9) Planned neighborhood ID sign on the east side of 3rd at Hume (Water Services) has yet to be installed.

Tonight we heard from MDHA that these conditions are being addressed and that they are setting a new completion/dedication date for January 15. This has been a long, drawn-out process that should have been over first in mid-2008 and then at several points this year, and I'm hoping it doesn't stretch out too far into 2010. Even though it hasn't been easy, it has been important for us to stay on top of MDHA lest important factors fall through the cracks.

While the advisory committee for all intents and purposes held its last meeting tonight, we are still communicating with MDHA, so please continue to contact us with your concerns if you live or own property in Salemtown. While it's disappointing that MDHA didn't wrap up today, the end is thankfully in sight. We just need to make sure they get it right.

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