Oberlin’s Morgan Street repaving project to be completed in 2017

By Scott Mahoney - smahoney@civitasmedia.com

It appears the Morgan Street repaving project, along with the rerouting of some storm sewer lines, will be completed sooner than expected after a decision made by Oberlin city council.

On April 3, council approved a request by the public works department to combine the second and third phases into one project, which will be completed by this year.

“The various Morgan Street segments, from Main to Pyle-South Amherst Road, are rated poor and fair in our pavement inventory,” public works director Jeff Baumann said in a memo to council. “The overall cost to repave the entire street is estimated at $1.25 million. As a result, the public works department has planned these improvements in three phases over a three-year period.”

Phase one — Main Street to Cedar Street — was completed in 2016 for $347,423. Phase two — Cedar Street to Colony Street — is included in the 2017 capital budget in the amount of $632,578. Phase three — Colony to Pyle-South Amherst Road — is estimated to cost $256,450.

Baumann said the money to complete the entire project is available in the city’s income tax capital improvement fund, thanks in part to public works completing several of its 2016 projects under budget.

Additionally, certain projects that were budgeted for 2017 will not go forward as planned, according to Baumann.

“In 2017, we budgeted $204,701 as our match to Safe Routes to School sidewalk construction,” he said. “Because of delays in the necessary acquisition of right-of-way along Lincoln Street, this project has been pushed back to 2018.”

The department also budgeted $73,428 for the construction of the pavilion at the Gasholder/Underground Railroad Center site, but the project has been pushed to 2018 due to the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency not being able to provide the matching funds this year.

“In total, these 2016 and 2017 projects represent about $480,000 in uncommitted income tax capital improvement project funding,” Baumann said. “The need for both phases of the Morgan Street project is readily apparent to the traveling public. Since the funding is available, public works recommends taking advantage of the improved economy of scale” both in terms of construction cost and administrative efficiency in combining the Morgan Street phase two and phase three projects in 2017.

Additionally, the department will reroute the Beech Street storm sewer down Morgan Street while the repaving project takes place.

The current route directs storm water flow from Beech Street and the Clarkwood subdivision, north along Pyle-South Amherst through the Robin Park neighborhood, almost to West College Street and then back to the south approximately 4,250 feet, Baumann said. “This contributes to upstream storm water back up on Beech Street, Pyle South Amherst and further along the route.”

The rerouting of the line, which will cost an estimated $102,000, will require the construction of 1,250 feet of 24-inch storm sewer in the north curb lawn of Morgan Street and will reduce the route by 3,000 feet.

The cost of combining phase three and the storm sewer line rerouting into this year’s budgeted phase two is $360,000, according to Baumann. The total combined project budget is $992,578.

Council asked Baumann to consider reducing the tap fee to access the storm sewer line for homes in construction area while construction takes place.

Scott Mahoney can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @sm_mahoney on Twitter.

By Scott Mahoney