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Just few weeks remain

Completion of a South First Street storm drain project remains afew weeks away, but construction officials say an end is insight.

“It’s nearing its end,” said Jeff Green, the engineer overseeingthe project for the city. “We can see an end in sight.”

Recently, crews with Dickerson and Bowen have been focusing oninstallation of drop inlets. The inlets provide water access to thedrain which carries the water out of the area.

“The inlets will be done, hopefully, by the end of next week,”said Donnie Smith, project foreman.

After checking progress on the project Thursday, Green saidabout three inlets remain to be built. Smith said 13 inlets arebeing done as part of the project.

The over $700,000 project began in January with handicap rampand sidewalk work, which was followed by installation a large stormdrain from around Justice Street to Monticello Street.

One goal of the project was to address street flooding in thearea around East Cherokee Street and South First Street. Smithindicated the storm drain work is already paying dividends in thatregard.

“It’s all been taken care of,” Smith said. “The rain waterdoesn’t flood here any more.”

After the storm drain was installed, Green said a milled asphaltmaterial was put down to provide a better riding surface formotorists.

Following inlet construction, Green said said the old materialwill be removed. Crews will then put asphalt in the trench that wasdug out for drain pipe installation.

Once the trench asphalt is in, the final phase will be millingthe street and paving overlay, Green said.

“That’s all going to happen fairly soon,” Green said.

Smith estimated the paving work would be done in about threeweeks. After paving, the only remaining items in the project willbe some miscellaneous curb work on First Street and clean up.

“It’s still got a lot of clean up to do, curbs to put in andwork to make it look pretty,” Smith said.