2018 Work Set To Begin with Clearing of Trees in Sections of Downtown Rail Corridor
Work on Middlebury’s Bridge and Rail Project this year gets underway next week with tree cutting, removal, and disposal on segments of State-owned landed in Middlebury’s downtown rail corridor.
The tree clearing is needed to accomplish this year’s two primary construction goals: 1) building new stormwater drainage infrastructure for the rail corridor and the central downtown area and 2) constructing a temporary access roadway from the end of Water Street along Otter Creek to the Battell Block parking lot for use during the closure of Merchants Row and Main Street for 10 weeks in Summer 2020.
Tree clearing will take place in three areas: 1) adjacent to the concrete foundation of the old Lazarus building in Printer’s Alley, 2) in the rail cut between the Main Street and Merchants Row bridges, and 3) along Otter Creek between Cross Street Bridge and the Town-owned pump station just shy of the Battell Block parking lot. The photo above shows a section of trees to be removed along the east bank of the Otter Creek just south of the Battell Block parking lot.
At the Town’s request, the contractor will also clear downed trees and brush on either side of the rail line in the area adjacent to the Marble Works between Elm Street Bridge and Main Street.
The tree-clearing contract has been awarded to JP Sicard, of Barton VT. They will mobilize on Thursday and Friday of this week and expect to begin work on Monday, March 19.
The work plan calls for trees to be cut before March 31 and removed by April 13. Stumps will be left in the ground to stabilize soil and prevent erosion. Work will take place during daylight hours. A flagger provided by Vermont Rail will ensure that work takes place safely as trains will continue to run on normal schedules.
Following completion of the Rail and Bridge Project in Spring 2021, both the area adjacent to the concrete foundation of the old Lazarus building in Printer’s Alley and the rail cut between the Main Street and Merchants Row bridges will transition to green space. The land alongside Otter Creek between Cross Street Bridge and the Battell Block parking lot will be rebuilt and landscaped. In all three cases, the community will have input into final design.
As the timeline for 2018 construction finalizes in the next two weeks, I’ll be back with updates on what you can expect and when.
That’s all for today. See you downtown.
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