Downtown Concord crosswalk repairs will cause traffic changes

  • A traffic sign alerts motorists of an upcoming closure of northbound traffic on Main Street to fix the crosswalks. GEOFF FORESTER / Monitor staff

  • Concord general services workers patch a crumbling crosswalk at the intersection of North Main and Pleasant street in October. File photo

  • This map shows the various detours and traffic pattern changes Concord motorists can expect on Main Street when crosswalk repairs begin on April 16, 2019. The repairs are expected to be wrapped up by Memorial Day weekend. City of Concord—Courtesy

Monitor staff
Published: 4/13/2019 9:00:30 PM

Concord motorists can expect some traffic changes for the next few weeks while the city replaces the N. Main Street crosswalks downtown.

The construction is expected to start this Tuesday and will wrap up before Memorial Day weekend, according to a city press release. The work will start at 7 a.m. and wrap up by 6 p.m. each day.

The city originally planned to replace the four crosswalks located where N. Main Street meets Pleasant, Warren and Depot streets, as well as the crosswalk across from the Capital Plaza building. That was expected to cost about $45,000.

Now, their plan is to replace all six crosswalks on the north side of Main Street with more durable materials for about $100,000.

All of the downtown’s 23 crosswalks were constructed in the same way: a concrete slab topped with an inch of compacted sand and then 3-inch bricks.

But N. Main Street is flatter and lower than S. Main Street, which caused drainage problems that washed the sand layer away on some crosswalks, said City Engineer David Cedarholm. The Pleasant Street crosswalk is burdened by left-turning traffic coming off Pleasant onto N. Main Street.

Trying to patch some of the buckled crosswalks with the same materials didn’t work, Cedarholm said.

“The spot repairs did not hold up well,” he said. “...Rather than fuss with current installation, we decided to take out all crosswalks constructed with the sand layer and replace them with an asphalt layer.”

The money for the repairs will still come out of leftover funds from the Main Street renovation project, Cedarholm said.

When the crosswalk work is actively happening, northbound traffic on N. Main Street will be detoured east on Pleasant Street to Storrs Street. Southbound traffic will not be detoured, according to the press release.

Traffic approaching Main Street from Capital and Warren streets will be permitted to make only right turns onto N. Main Street. Detours will be taken down at the end of each workday and two-way traffic will be allowed to resume each evening.

Cedarholm said the city will replace the crosswalks near Park Street and Capitol Street first, then the crossing in front of Capital Plaza. Crosswalks near Warren Street and Depot Street will be next, with the Pleasant and N. Main Street crosswalk last.

A map of the detours, which includes the state’s ongoing efforts to replace the defunct Concord Steam heating system, is available online.

(Caitlin Andrews can be reached at 369-3309, or on Twitter at @ActualCAndrews.)

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