CEDAR RAPIDS — With a roundabout on E Avenue NW, a new intersection on Mount Vernon Road SE and as many as 50 residential projects across the community, officials say this year’s Paving for Progress season will be a busy one.
Paving for Progress program manager Doug Wilson said the program this year will be about 90 percent resurfacing projects on mostly residential streets, with the remaining 10 percent focused on full roadway reconstruction efforts.
“With 50 projects, it’s one of our largest years in the program for residential streets,” Wilson said. “We’ve got a lot of resurfacing projects this year, a lot of life extension projects.”
In addition to a handful of reconstruction efforts, Wilson said city crews will be tasked with some repaving efforts. He did note that those projects could see delays if city crews are pulled into other duties such as responding to weather or flooding.
Funded by a 1-cent local-option sales tax approved five years ago, Paving for Progress has funneled nearly $80 million into Cedar Rapids roads since it began in 2014 — roughly $18 million to $19 million a year. In the decade before the program, the city spent just shy of $60 million on roads, an average of roughly $6 million annually.
In its first five years, Paving for Progress has funded 134 separate projects covering about 43.7 linear miles of roadway. Of the projects completed, about 66 percent have been on local or residential roads, while the remaining 33 percent have been on arterial streets.
“Overall, over the past five years, we’ve seen about a 6 percent decrease in our poor roads, but we’ve also seen a decrease in the number of roadways that are in fair condition,” Wilson said, adding that officials expect to continue to see roads in fair condition drop while those in good condition climb.
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With the local-option sales tax expiring in June 2024, city leaders have said it’s likely voters could be asked to renew the tax.
Wilson said officials have always known that 10 years of Paving for Progress wouldn’t be enough to address all the city’s roadway needs.
“Beyond the 10 years, some sort of funding will need to be recommended by city staff. We’re going to need to continue to work on the roadways beyond this 10 years,” he said.
In addition to Paving for Progress work this year, city crews most recently have been turning their attention to the plague of potholes caused by the last few months of winter weather.
City public works officials have said multiple snow events, extremely cold temperatures, rain and temperature swings have created street deterioration and potholes. A lack of dry conditions make it challenging to apply patches.
Wilson said some of this year’s Paving for Progress road updates — like Council Street NE and 12th Avenue SE — increase the overall roadway quality and can prevent future potholes, which generally occur on deteriorating streets.
“Overall, these permanent repairs will decrease our reliance on temporary measures such as pothole patching,” Wilson said in an email.
Some of this year’s larger Paving for Progress projects include:
• Council Street NE, from Collins Road to 46th Street. Work will include a complete reconstruction, drainage and utility improvements, a sidewalk on the residential side of the street and trail extensions.
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• Center Point Road NE at the 32nd Street NE intersection and pavement improvements between 29th and 32nd streets. Work will include a new intersection at 32nd Street with left and right turn lanes, new ADA traffic signals and storm sewer, sanitary sewer and water main improvements.
• Ellis Boulevard NW and Sixth Street NW. Work on the three-year project begins this year and includes pavement and rehabilitation work between I and O avenues.
• Johnson Avenue NW. This year marks the final for the two-year project and will include a pavement replacement and roundabout installation at Jacolyn Drive.
• Mount Vernon Road SE between 26th Street and Memorial Drive and between 38th Street and East Post Road. Work will include pavement and utility installation, reconfigured travel lanes to create two eastbound lanes, one westbound lane and one center turn lane. Primary access to Hy-Vee will be built at the 40th Street intersection to improve safety. Future work on Mount Vernon Road is planned for 2022-2024.
• 12th Avenue SE. Work this year will take place between 17th and 19th streets and includes pavement reconstruction and utility improvements. Future work will take place in 2020 and 2021.
The full 2019 Paving for Progress list:
(Note: An asterisk means the project is continued from 2018 construction season)
1. *3rd Avenue Bridge over the Cedar River
2. 11th Street SW from 3rd Avenue to 8th Avenue
3. 12th Avenue SE from 17th Street to McCarthy Road
4. 19th Avenue SW from 11th Street to 9th Street
5. 19th Street NE from C Avenue to E Avenue
6. 1st Avenue West from Leroy Street to Johnson Avenue
7. 1st Avenue West from Stoney Point Road to Broadmore Road
8. 20th Street SE from Bever Avenue to Washington Avenue
9. 22nd Street NE from D Avenue to 1st Avenue
10. 23rd Street NE from D Avenue to A Avenue
11. 23rd Street SE from Meadowbrook Drive to 5th Avenue
12. 28th Avenue SW from 27th Street to 31st Street
13. 29th Street Drive SE (erosion control)
14. 35th Street SE from Mt Vernon Road to Dalewood Avenue
15. 3rd Avenue SE from 1st Street to 19th Street
16. 42nd Street NE from F Avenue to C Avenue
17. 7th Avenue SW from 6th Street to 8th Street
18. 8th Avenue SW from 18th Street to 15th Street
19. 8th Street SW from 5th Avenue to 7th Avenue
20. *Arizona Avenue NE from Center Point Road to Lawrence Street
21. Auburn Drive SW from 12th Avenue to 1st Avenue
22. Broadlawn Drive SE from Green Valley Terrace to Dead End
23. Center Point Road NE from 29th Street to 32nd Street
24. Cherry Hill Road SW from Johnson Avenue to 1st Avenue
25. Council Street NE from south of 46th Street to Collins Road
26. Crestridge Avenue SW from Broadmore Road to 1st Avenue
27. Dairydale Court SE from 32nd Street to Knoll Street
28. Dalewood Avenue SE from 34th Street to 35th Street
29. E Avenue NE from Old Marion Road north to Dead End
30. East Post Road SE from south of Fox Meadow Drive to south of Cottage Grove Avenue
31. Ellis Boulevard NW from I Avenue to O Avenue
32. Forest Drive SE from Grande Avenue to Mt Vernon Road
33. H Avenue NW from 10th Street to Ellis Road
34. *H Avenue NE from 14th Street to 16th Street; 16th Street NE from H Avenue to D Avenue
35. *Johnson Avenue NW from 1st Avenue to Wesley Drive
36. Matthew Drive SW from 29th Street to 25th Street
37. Meadowlark Lane NW from 1st Avenue to Skyline Drive
38. *Memorial Drive SE from McCarthy Road to Mt Vernon Road
39. *Memorial Drive SE from Mt Vernon Road to Bever Avenue
40. *Midway Drive NW from West Post Road to Zelda Drive and from Alma Drive to Wiley Boulevard
41. Mt Vernon Road SE from 38th Street to East Post Road
42. Outlook Drive SW from 29th Avenue to Clover Drive
43. Park Avenue SE from 19th Street to 21st Street
44. Ravenwood Terrace NW from Edgewood Road to 29th Street
45. Silverthorne Road NE from Coppermill Road to Dead End
46. Stoney Point Road NW from E Avenue to Cherry Hill Park
47. Teakwood Lane NE from C Avenue to Purple Drive
48. Washington Avenue SE from 19th Street to 20th Street
49. Willow Street SW from 29th Street to 25th Street
50. Zelda Drive NW from Midway Drive to 400 Zelda Drive
For more details, visit cityofcr.com/pavingforprogress.
l Comments: (319) 398-8309; email@example.com