Binkley Street Improvement construction is nearing an end.
Crews are now tackling the Park Avenue intersection, which is closed to traffic for the final leg of the project. The roadway between Park Avenue and Corral Street are currently the focus of paving, signage installation and striping.
The Park Avenue intersection will likely reopen by early next week, city engineer Kyle Kornelis said. Very few closures will be made on Binkley Street up until the end of the season once the work between Corral Street and Park Avenue is complete, Kornelis said.
Crews are also working on curbs and sidewalks, Kornelis said. There will be a few punch list items to deal with in the springtime, he said.
Moore’s Landscaping, a landscaping company based on the Kenai Peninsula, has paused work on beautification landscaping and planting around the construction until next spring due to the cold temperatures consistently being experienced in the area, Kornelis said.
While snow is expected in the near future, the contractor will work through light dustings, until weather forces the project to shut down, Kornelis said.
“The contractors have been working diligently to get the project completed,” Kornelis said.
A detour route has been established down West Corral Street, Fireweed Street, West Park Street and West Redoubt Street. Access to the Soldotna U.S. Post Office is still limited to the entrance off of Park Avenue.
The sewer collection lift station that is to be installed at the intersection of Corral Avenue and Binkley Street will be postponed until early next spring, Kornelis said.
In addition to the new upgraded lift station an insulated stand-by generator will be installed to maintain pump flow when the area has a power outage, Kornelis said in a previous Clarion interview.
Kornelis said occasionally the contractors have run into unexpected set backs that stretched out the different phases of construction. When opening up new areas underground in roadwork construction, coming across damaged or shifted infrastructure or infrastructure that does not match up with city record drawings is common, he said.
Since the Binkley Street project is the first major rehabilitation that has been done on the city’s main traffic corridor in three decades, the old drawings don’t always match up with what is actually there, he said.
City policy and procedures outlining how to deal with previous construction in some cases has changed and previously installed equipment may not match up with how technology has adapted, Kornelis said.
“We believe it is important to update non-conforming construction when we encounter it,” Kornelis said.
The street work is still on schedule to be completed by the end of this month. The city will have a better idea of what the final schedule will look like after a meeting with the contractors Thursday, Kornelis said.
“We have almost all local contractors working on this project and we are going to have a superb end-product for the community,” Kornelis said.
All current updates on the improvements, including detours and road closures are listed at binkleystreet.org.
Reach Kelly Sullivan at email@example.com.