Open house set Tuesday for work on Race Street

Open house set Tuesday for work on Race Street

URBANA — Engineering officials will host an open house at Urbana High School on Tuesday evening to provide information about the upcoming reconstruction of a portion of Race Street, slated to begin Wednesday.

The entire project consists of the reconstruction of the street between Michigan Avenue to just south of Washington Street and will be done in two phases. Race Street will be closed to through traffic and residents will have to park on side streets while the work is going on. It's expected to take about 10 weeks.

During the first phase, scheduled to begin at 7 a.m. Wednesday, Race will be closed between Indiana Avenue and Washington. The second phase involves the closure of Race from Michigan to Indiana Avenue and it will begin when the first phase is done.

The work involves the removal of the existing pavement and its replacement with new concrete pavement.

Also to be installed will be new curbs, gutters, wider sidewalks, storm sewers and street lighting.

Other improvements include the installation of accessible sidewalk ramps and bus turnouts to allow for bus parking in front of Urbana High School. Race Street will also be a shared bike and vehicle street and will have the "sharrow" bicycle symbol painted on the pavement.

Anyone wanting more information should attend the open house at the high school, 205 N. Race St., between 5 and 7 p.m. Tuesday. It will be in room 2141 on the second floor. Parking will be available on Iowa Street and attendees may enter the school through door No. 1 off of Iowa Street.

No formal presentation is planned, but exhibits, plans and aerial pictures of the proposed improvements will be available, and engineering staff from the city will be on hand to discuss the project and answer questions.

If the weather cooperates, the project is slated to be done Aug. 20.

Urbana civil engineer Jacob McCoy said the project will cost $850,000. The work is being done by Kinney Contractors from Raymond.

Interim Urbana High School Principal Joe Wiemelt said the school has no plans for new traffic patterns when the project is complete.

"This will actually make our bus pickup and drop-offs more effective and safer for students," Wiemelt said.

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