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2019 Update #40

Downtown Sewer Line Work Nearing an End

The Highlights

  • Printer’s Alley and Main Street sidewalk reopen to pedestrians

  • Merchants Row Bridge closed to thru traffic Friday - Sunday

  • Main Street limited to one lane of traffic through end of day Friday

  • Blasting underneath Main Street Bridge Saturday and Sunday

We’ve just about completed the most disruptive phase of this year’s construction for the community at large.

Installation of a new town sewer line, which began several weeks ago along the rail corridor between Water Street and the Battell Block, last week moved onto Main Street, reducing traffic on the Main Street Bridge to one lane and closing down both the sidewalk on Main Street between the National Bank’s Duclos Building and the Post Office and the pedestrian pathway down Printer’s Alley connecting Main Street and the Marble Works.

By Thursday evening, the excavated area in front of the National Bank had been backfilled and paved, as had Printer’s Alley. Detour signs will be removed on Friday, the “Welcome to the Marble Works” sign at the top of Printer’s Alley will be put back in place, and any remaining paving completed. The walk between the Bank and the P.O. is now back to a two-minute stroll over the footbridge! (Though do take care; that footbridge was quite slippery in Thursday evening’s slush.)

On Friday, Kubricky will complete the sewer line crossing underneath Main Street, closing the northbound lane during the day so that it can excavate and lay the sewer pipe.

Concurrently, Kubricky has begun installing that section of the new sewer line that runs up the Battell driveway and underneath Merchants Row and Triangle Park. To do that, as I reported earlier this week, Kubricky will close Merchants Row to through traffic Friday morning through end of the day Sunday. There will be some impact on the parking in front of the Battell Block during this period. That work will continue through the weekend.

Another Blasting Weekend

Maine Drilling & Blasting will be conducting blasting again this weekend to remove bedrock underneath the Main Street Bridge in preparation for next year’s full excavation of the rail line.

There will be no blasting on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, blasting is scheduled to take place early morning, around lunchtime, and before dark. I don’t expect much disruption from this activity, just the usual 10-minute holding pattern while the blast takes place. Maine will be drilling through the night underneath Main Street Bridge, though that work will be done with a smaller (and quieter) drill.

A second Maine D&B crew will be working this weekend behind Bourdon Insurance to complete stabilizing the slope behind the building.

Train service through Middlebury will be suspended from Friday morning through Monday morning. ECI will reset the rail on Sunday night.

Next week work will continue on all of the slope stabilization activity we’ve been reporting on—lagging, wailers, tiebacks, soil nails, the whole nine yards. That work will take place between the two bridges and along the rail corridor south of the Battell Block. Kubricky will be working on Veteran's Day.

Goings On Around Town

Have you seen the posters around town advertising the Middlebury Planapalooza?

This five-day public event, an important step in developing Middlebury’s Downtown Master Plan, gets underway Thursday, November 7, with an opening presentation at the Town Offices and then continues through the weekend at 51 Main, Bundle’s new home, with a series of focus groups.

You can take part in the focus groups or just wander into 51 Main on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to see how plans are taking shape. A closing presentation takes place at Town Hall Theater Monday evening at 6 PM. More info can be found here. Come add your voice as the community collaborates to build a vision for the future of our town.

Speaking of Bundle, its fab maestro Kelly Hickey has lined up a diverse series of events for November. Check out the latest Bundle activity here.

And speaking of fab, a unique look at that magical music that came out of the Sixties can be found at Town Hall Theater next Friday, November 15, when MNFF Selects screens the new documentary, David Crosby: Remember My Name.

Crosby came to prominence singing high harmony for “Mr. Tambourine Man” and “Turn, Turn, Turn” as The Byrds melded The Beatles and folk music to create a new sound. Then came Crosby, Stills, and Nash, superstardom, and all of the problems that typically accompany that kind of success. Crosby’s story is worth hearing. Tickets are $15 through the THT box office. You can read more about upcoming MNFF Selects films here.

That’s all for today. See you downtown.

Please keep your comments and questions coming. Send me an email at and I’ll try to cover it in my next update.

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