2021 Update #33

Inspection Week Passes


The Highlights

  • Final Inspection marks another milestone

  • A quick paving update


Have you noticed how Triangle Park has become an active and animated part of downtown life?

As shown in our first photo of the week—taken early Thursday morning—these days it’s rare not to see people meeting outdoors, enjoying their morning coffee, or just sitting and watching the world go by.


The anonymously donated Adirondack chairs add color to the setting and their versatility—you can pick them up and move them around as you wish—gives the park a sense of vitality.


Your Weekly Construction Update

This week saw three inspections of our downtown construction project take place.


On Monday, the VHB team that designed the new public spaces in Triangle Park and Lazarus Park led an inspection of all of the elements, including trees and shrubs, that make up these two new parks. Among other things that were noted, as we’ve previously discussed, the Triangle Park lawn still needs some work. To that end, Kubricky has been smoothing the lawn’s surface out with additional top soil and reseeding.


On Tuesday our Department of Public Works crew inspected the new sewer and stormwater drainage manholes, noting sections that need cleaning out and/or repairing and minor leaks that need fixing. This work will need to take place before the Town officially accepts and takes on responsibility for maintaining the new infrastructure.


And then on Tuesday afternoon, VTrans officials joined project managers from VHB and Kubricky and Town officials for a Final Inspection. This is a formal walk-through of the entire project, including the Amtrak rail platform, directed by the VTrans resident engineer. Its purpose is to confirm that the project has been completed as planned.


In total, a few items were added to the punch list of minor corrections and repairs that need to be completed before the project is fully signed off on.


Final Inspection didn’t have the sense of moment that we experienced last September when Main Street and Merchants Row and the railroad simultaneously reopened after a tough summer all around. Or when the community dedicated to the Lazarus family the new park that now serves as a (labyrinthine?) gateway between Main Street and the Marble Works.


But it was an important step in the process of bringing things to conclusion. And a good opportunity to spend a few hours with the VTrans team who took over this project at a critical juncture and brought the leadership and sustained engagement with our community it needed to succeed.


Look Up!

On Wednesday, VHB’s drone team was in town to take photographs and video of the project from overhead as it nears completion. I’ll be sharing some of those with you as they become available.


In the meantime, our second photo of the week, taken from the roof of the National Bank’s Duclos Building on Tuesday morning, provides a good view from overhead of the St. Stephen’s labyrinth and the rail corridor extending north toward the rail platform. You can see how the grass is growing in along either side of the rail line and the newly paved roadway in the Marble Works.

Back on the ground, Kubricky continues to work on the punch list items we’ve been discussing. This week found them repairing cracks in the concrete of the Main Street parapet wall overlooking the rail corridor to the north and the Amtrak rail platform. For those curious about such things, the repairs are being made with an epoxy-injected sealant, creating essentially a “crack weld.”


Pressure-washing of the cobblestone bump-outs seems to be nearing an end and, in the ongoing effort to keep water out of where it doesn’t belong, Kubricky is coating sections of the concrete U-walls and cap walls with silane to seal it against water penetration.


Finally, on the paving front, Hutchins expects to pave the remaining triangular area in Court Square (it’s known as a truck apron) next week and to begin paving the sections that connect the newly paved surface with connecting roads—at, for example, the entrance to the Aubuchon plaza from Cross Street and the intersection of South Street and South Main Street. Also on tap next week is paving the section of 125 between 22A and West Street.


That’s all for today. See you downtown.


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

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