City Street Superintendent Albert Bridge said work has begun on the replacement of five stretches of sidewalk that were in bad need of being replaced.
A city crew started the demolition work this week, tearing up the sidewalk on the south side of the 100 block of West Cleveland.
The stretch of sidewalk is just across the street from City Hall.
On Monday, carpenters and concrete finishers with Central Road & Utility of Austin are expected to arrive in town to begin building forms and tying steel for the concrete pour.
Bridge expected to see concrete trucks coming into town on Thursday.
Bridge said the city and the contractor are planning to work together in an effort to create as little interruption as possible to pedestrian and vehicle traffic in downtown Beeville.
The city’s demolition crew will work just ahead of the contractor, with plans to have the existing sidewalks out of the way by the time the carpenters are ready to start on the forms.
Bridge said the contractor hopes to build forms on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Plans are to pour concrete on Thursdays of each week to give the finished product a good 72 hours (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) to cure before normal traffic is allowed to resume on the new surfaces.
Each stretch of sidewalk will be finished with the washed aggregate look the way the sidewalks are finished in the 100-300 blocks of North Washington Street.
Interim City Manager Marvin Townsend said the Tax Increment Finance District in downtown Beeville is paying for the bulk of the $80,689 project.
The TIF had budgeted $60,000 for the job, but bids kept coming in at considerably more than that.
In January, Townsend recommended that the City Council accept the $80,689 bid from Central Road and Utility.
The TIF board was able to come up with an additional $12,875 for the project, and the remainder of the money, $9,814, will be coming from the city’s street maintenance fund.
Bridge said sidewalks will be replaced on the south side of the 100 block of West Hefferman Street (where work is underway now).
The next stretch to be replaced will be a half a block on the west side of the 400 block of North Washington Street.
Then another half block of the south side of the 200 block of West Hefferman will be replaced.
Next, a half block on the north side of the 100 block of East Corpus Christi will be replaced. Bridge said that stretch of sidewalk, just west of the city’s event center, has been in bad need of sidewalk for some time.
Bridge said the city is getting good cooperation from local utility companies on finding underground lines in hopes of avoiding an accident while removing the existing sidewalks and excavating.
Urban Engineering of Corpus Christi did the design work for the project, and the city staff is hoping for cooperation from the weather.
Bridge said if rain delays progress on the job, no one will complain. “We need the rain,” he said.
“Hopefully next year or the year after, we’ll have enough to do a few more blocks,” Bridge said.
Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.