By Charles Sercombe
The city’s alley repaving project is getting an extra boost.
City officials found some extra money from savings in the budget and also dipped into the city’s budget surplus to come up with over $700,000 to pave eight more alleys this year.
But instead of concentrating on alleys bordering on Jos. Campau or Conant – the city’s main business districts – this project will concentrate on residential alleys.
City Manager Kathy Angerer said spending the money on residential improvements is something the city owes to residents. Angerer added that it’s better to spend the money than “put it in the bank for a rainy day. We already have a rainy day fund. We are going to live within our means.”
Mayor Karen Majewski agreed.
“I’m really excited,” she said. “It’s about time we worked on residential areas.”
The work started this month, but may not be completed before cold weather sets in. If that’s the case, the project will pick back up in spring. Repairs will also be made to catch basins and sewer lines if needed.
“We do not expect issues, but if we encounter them we will need to address them,” said Angerer.
There was one slight snag in the matter. Councilmember Saad Almasmari wanted to know if the council could still weigh in on which alleys to improve. Angerer told him the city is relying on an engineering study, which ranked the city’s entire alley network from worst to best.
“This is a scientific study,” Angerer said. “We have to be fair to everyone.”
She said that jumping ahead of the scheduled repairs would appear like the city is giving “preferential treatment.”
Councilmember Ian Perrotta stressed it is important to “follow facts, not opinions.”
Almasmari was the only councilmember to vote against the alley improvement schedule.
The alleys in question will be torn up and repaved with asphalt – not concrete.
The alleys slated for improvements include:
o Alley north of Florian, from Lumpkin to Brombach
o Alley east of Lumpkin, from Faber to Goodson
o Alley north of Norwalk, from Brombach to Jos. Campau
o Alley east of Gallagher, from Commor to Casmere
o Alley north of Holmes, from Mackay to Jos. Campau
o Alley east of Klinger, from Carpenter to Commor
o Alley north of Norwalk, from Dequindre to Lumpkin
o Alley north of Belmont, from Jos. Campau to Gallagher
Sept. 14, 2018