This is the season of Thanksgiving, and this year I am thankful for something rather unusual – dust! Yes, dust means that we are finally getting off the dime with many of our projects, and we are moving forward as a city.
In big cities, the signs of prosperity and growth are the sight of construction cranes along the skyline. In smaller towns like Seguin, prosperity and growth are represented by bulldozers, excavators and torn up streets – and dust.
It is inconvenient. It is dusty, dirty, and noisy. But it has to be done. (I might add that it is nice to see a lot of Caterpillar equipment doing this work. Maybe some of those machines have Seguin-built engines in them!)
What’s happening along River Street and Mountain Street near downtown now is really only the beginning.
Seguin is going to be subjected to a lot of this activity for the next several years.
Yes, I said years - not months. We’ve got an awful lot to fix, and we’ve got an awful lot to add. It will make an awful lot of dust and an awful lot of mess, and create an awful lot of frustration, but it is something we must endure to improve things.
I may have discussed some of this in a previous column, and you know how I feel about our lousy streets, but many people are still unaware of the extent and purpose of what we are trying to accomplish. Just to give you an idea of what’s ahead, here are a few of the projects on the board now.
The most visible project now is the River, San Marcos and Heideke Streets project. Phase 1 on River Street will be completed in mid 2015. Phase 2 will then begin on San Marcos Street from Court to Kingsbury for completion in 2016. Phase 3 on Heideke Street will also stretch from Court to Kingsbury, and will be the last part of this project, which will probably take us well into 2017 or longer.
Many of you are asking why the traffic cones and lane diversions are on East Court Street. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has informed us that a void has developed around a culvert beneath the road surface, and a sink hole was developing on the roadway. This is a TxDOT project, so we do not have direct control over it. However, we will continue to urge TxDOT to repair this problem as soon as possible. It is doubly inconvenient, since traffic on East Court has increased due to the closing of Mountain Street.
After many delays due to problems with right-of-way acquisition, the North Austin Street project will begin next year. This is another major TxDOT project. The City will take advantage of this opportunity to add new storm drainage and replace all utilities while TxDOT lowers and widens the road surface, and adds sidewalks.
The improvements to the SH46 at IH10 intersection along with the access roads along IH10 will be bid out in April 2015, and will probably begin construction later in the year for completion in 2016.
While all this is going on, we have several sewer and water main replacements and extensions, sidewalk projects, overlaying Vaughan Street near Park West, and the Walnut Branch trail construction.
Add all this to the construction of Park West, the new Library, the new WalMart and related pad sites, Meadows at Nolte Farms, Greenspoint, and site work for the new Siro Group facility.
I didn’t even mention downtown, and the great things going on with the wonderful restorations that are happening. That will probably require a whole column in the future.
As you can see, there will be much dust swirling around Seguin for many years to come, and I for one, am very thankful.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
Gosh, I love this town!
Archive coming soon!
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