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Thursday, August 5th, 2010

Main Street redo to start

By William Kincaid
CELINA - Reconstruction of Main Street is scheduled to begin Monday, and at least two blocks will be closed to all vehicles, Celina Planning and Community Development Director Kent Bryan said.
Smith Paving & Excavating Inc. of Norwalk - contracted by the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) for $3.237 million - is doing the work, Bryan said.
A majority of the project could be completed in two or three phases.
Some Celina Merchant Association members voiced concern about the project interfering with the prime shopping season from mid-November to January. Kim Nation, owner of The Potter House on Main, said she was worried about work interfering with her Christmas open house in November.
According to Bryan, reconstruction work initially was planned to occur on two blocks of Main Street at a time over three phases: Fulton Street to Market Street from August to Sept. 30; Market Street to Warren Street from October to Nov. 30; and Warren to Lake Shore Drive from April to May 31.
But to appease downtown businesses, the contractor has agreed to complete the project in two phases with work to be done on three blocks at a time: from Fulton Street to Fayette Street from August to Nov. 5 and from Fayette to Lake Shore Drive starting in March.
Once the primary phases are finished, the contractor will apply a final inch of asphalt to the entire street next summer, Bryan said.
Bryan will meet with the CMA Friday to learn what option its members support.
Either way, barricades will be placed on at least two blocks starting at Fulton Street on Monday, preventing vehicle access.
"It's going to take some patience until we get done," Celina Public Works Superintendent Joe Wolfe said.
The reconstruction will include rebuilding the street and installation of new curbs and sidewalks from Lake Shore Drive to Fulton Street, as well as adding decorative street lighting and new traffic lights.
It also calls for underground conduits for electric lines for street and traffic lights, Wolfe said.
Waterlines on Main Street have already been replaced. Also, numerous alleys in a four-block triangular area south of Logan Street and west of Main Street and several alleys in downtown Celina - on either side of Main Street from Logan to Fulton streets - were repaved.
The city's local share for the Main Street project is about $1.696 million. A $356,500 Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) grant brings the city's portion to about $1.35 million.
Celina City Council members in May approved borrowing $1.35 million to cover the city's costs. The 20-year loan from First Financial Bank has a 3.06 percent interest rate and will be paid mainly through revenue generated by the electric fund, since most of the improvements are related to electrical work.
Bryan said annual payments would be approximately $75,000, but he expects the city to pay off the debt in three to four years - not 20.
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