Plain City street projects move forward

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Although some of Plain City’s projects have been put on hold for the year due to COVID-19, the village plans to move forward with a handful of street projects.
One of the plans still in motion involves the complete water and sewer line replacement and repaving of Gay Street—a project similar to the work done on Maple Street last year.
“We’re still waiting on funds from OPWC (Ohio Public Works Commission) which should be in place soon,” said village administrator, Nathan Cahall. “Once they pass the capital spending bill in the state legislature, the funds should be available so we can get started.”
The Gay Street project is estimated to cost $1.3 million and Cahall added the OPWC funds “may be available” next month. If the village gets the money in place, there would likely be a bid awarded after Labor Day, Cahall said.
The road work would run the entire stretch of Gay Street between West Avenue and Bigelow Avenue.
The village is also looking at bidding out three other street projects in the coming weeks, starting with the water main replacement along South Chillicothe Street.
“We’re going to be replacing the existing four-inch water main with a new 12-inch main which should hopefully help with the water issues on that end of town,” Cahall said. “That’s scheduled to start next week and the contract should be in place by the end of the month.”
Crews will replace the main between Lantern Lane South Avenue.
The village will also tackle the annual street and alleyway replacement projects. Bids for that will be open in two weeks, Cahall said.
In about a month, Cahall said the village would be moving forward with a hiking and biking path that will go between the elementary school and the new Darby Fields subdivision.
One project planned for this year that did get pushed back was the parking lot behind the Lovejoy’s Plaza building on Main Street.
Last year, village officials planned to repave and expand the lot which shares property with Buckeye Brass and Winds in an effort to make more public parking available in the uptown area.
Plans involved replacing the drainage system in the grass lot behind the Buckeye Brass building as well as repaving the existing lot and adding landscape islands with trees.
Additionally, the village planned to turn Smith Place on the west side of the Lovejoy’s building into a one-way street and close the alley on the east side of the building to make it a pedestrian walkway.
“We had hoped to work on that this year and have it all done by the fall but then the virus hit,” Cahall said. At the April 27 meeting, Cahall told council delaying the parking lot could save the village close to $300,000.
The majority of the village’s revenue comes from income tax which Cahall said was down this year.
“That project was one we just decided to push to next year since revenue is down. Everything is done and in place though, so we can get right to it next year,” he said. “With the tax filing deadline being moved to July, we’re just not going to be in a position until later in the year to know what kind of shape we’re going to be in.”
Cahall added that the village may not rebound from the lack of income tax revenue until October at which point construction season will be over.



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