It may not feel like spring, but roadway construction in Lower Village is just around the corner. The Planning Department, our resident engineers, and members of ET&L (our construction contractor) met in February to discuss preliminary schedules and traffic control details in the lead up to the spring – 2018 construction season of the Lower Village Traffic Improvement project. Weather depending, Route 117 construction could begin as early as mid – late March.
Our Police, Highway and Planning Departments are working closely with one another to ensure that the construction process is smooth and that any issues that arise through the scheduled work can be dealt with efficiently. Construction timing will generally run from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm. The hours of operation represent a balance between constructing the project on-time within the MassWorks deadlines and ensuring that construction has ended by the busy evening commute each day.
Over the winter, construction staging has already begun, with some of the drainage items being stored on the Lower Village Common. Further storage of drainage items will be kept on the Lower Common through the construction season, as its location is almost perfectly centered halfway through the project corridor.
Back in 2016, the Town of Stow worked with the Massachusetts Historical Commission by completing an excavation of the Lower Common to determine whether any artifacts could be harmed by the work. Nothing other than brick, old road debris and bits of plastic were recovered in the project. An in-depth history of the area and description of the excavation can be found here.
Prior to starting work, the Town’s Departments will be meeting with the ET&L team to discuss traffic control and public safety protocols. We’ll review any pinchpoints that could be encountered by our Emergency Response teams and identify ways to ensure that our public safety departments are fully functional during construction.
The Planning Department has coordinated with the Nashoba School District and has been communicating bus stop locations and times to ET&L so that accommodations can be made during construction. The intent is to make sure all students can be picked up and dropped off at the normal time and location.
The first work to take place will be the removal of the center lane barrels and curbs. This will allow the contractor to shift lanes of traffic as they work on the north and south sides of Route 117. The next step for the contractor be the preparation of the south side of Route 117 for the sidewalk, bike lanes and grass buffer strips. A more specific schedule is shown below. Keep in mind the below schedule is subject to change due to weather, but offers an idea of the expected duration of the south side impacts. Work on the north side of Route 117 will commence more fully through June and will be the subject of follow up notices.
|Excavate road edge for accommodating bike lanes and sidewalk||Early - Mid April|
|Install gravel and crushed stone in excavation areas||Mid - Late April|
|Pave base course in excavated areas||Late April|