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Steamboat Springs Scott Contracting crews are planning to pave from 13th Street to 11th Street starting at noon Thursday, and they could pave to Ninth Street before stopping work for the summer June 30.
Jody Patten, project information manager for Scott Contracting, said Thursday’s paving will be conducted in the daytime — as opposed to the usual practice of paving overnight — because the 13th Street location doesn’t allow for complete closure of Lincoln Avenue through the paving zone. Scott has used such closures for nighttime paving during the Colorado Department of Transportation’s $5.6 million project on U.S. Highway 40 through downtown Steamboat Springs.
Because there are no side streets to allow for detours around paving at 13th Street, Patten said, Scott Contracting decided to pave in the daytime Thursday with one lane of traffic in each direction, rather than set up lighting and other equipment needed for nighttime work.
“There’s more risks when you (pave) at night,” Patten said Tuesday. “The safety isn’t as great, and the cost is greater.”
Patten said Thursday’s paving will be very noisy and could last as long as 12 hours.
Patten also said the Sixth Street intersection will be open in time for Saturday’s first Mainstreet Farmers Market of the season. A drainage problem required crews to tear up more asphalt than planned, Patten said, but new asphalt should be poured on Sixth today and the intersection should be open Thursday.
“There’s no problem with the Saturday Farmers Market,” Patten said.
The recent warm, relatively clear weather has helped work progress quickly, she said. While plans last week were to pave to just past 11th Street before stopping work for the summer, Patten said crews now are planning to pave to Ninth Street next week, likely June 15.
Any paving and work crews can complete now means less work during variable fall weather. Scott Contracting will resume the downtown project Sept. 7.
“We’re just trying to take advantage of this weather,” Patten said.
She said the Third Street intersection could open in the middle of next week.
The closure of 13th Street has contributed to significant traffic delays on U.S. 40 west of downtown this week. Not only are eastbound drivers unable to detour to downtown via 13th Street, but residents and businesses in the Fairview neighborhood have to circle back to U.S. 40 to access downtown, adding to the traffic.
“It is pretty slow going,” city of Steamboat Springs engineer Ben Beall said. “The good news is we’re getting some good progress here in the last few weeks.”
Beall said that after 13th Street is paved Thursday, the concrete will need a week of curing time in addition to the completion of other intersection work, such as crosswalks, before the intersection reopens.
Beall said Denver-based Colorado Hardscapes will be in Steamboat Springs on Monday to work on bulb-outs for intersections on the north side of Lincoln Avenue.