Paving Starts Again

By: Charles Daniel
By: Charles Daniel

Lately, driving through some parts of Meridian has seemed a little bumpy as road crews continued to scrape up old asphalt and then overlay streets.

Paving began again Thursday on 23rd Avenue, between 14th Street and 9th Street. It's part of an ongoing $4.5 million project, but just like motorists in Meridian, this project has run into more than a few bumps.

"We finally got a good day so that we can pave. The rain just slows us down. We can't have any water on the streets," said public works director Monty Jackson. "All this rain we've had, even a little bit of rain, will not allow us to pave because we don't want moisture under the new pavement."

And Mother Nature can also share the blame with Father Time for other delays, according to city officials.

Some of the curbing on Poplar Springs Drive and also on 23rd Avenue was more deteriorated than originally anticipated and it had to be replaced.

It was also discovered that a sewer leak and a failing storm drain needed replacing near Magnolia Cemetery on 23rd Avenue. Thus, the road has been closed for those repairs.

"During this process we found a big sewer leak in a manhole that was leaking and we had to go down and replace the manhole," Jackson said. "During that process, there was a storm drain right next to it that was an old corrugated metal pipe that was failing."

The repairs should be finished by the end of next week and that section of 23rd Avenue reopened.

Another issue to address will be striping the roads. Once again, Mother Nature must cooperate.

Temperatures must be above 55 degrees to apply the special thermal plastic material that will be used to line the streets. Also, the contractor is not located in Meridian. To limit the number of trips made, that company is waiting for most of the repaving to be completed before starting to stripe the streets.

"The subcontractor from APAC is out of town, so he wants to come over here an do all he can do while he is over here," said Jackson.

Weather permitting, crews will begin paving 23rd Avenue from 14th Street, north to 25th Street Friday.

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