Part 2 of a 3-part series.
It’s not just that the bond program paved the way for more street resurfacing — the $32 million in transportation bonds approved by voters in 2016 allowed the Asheville Public Works Department to incorporate major stormwater and sidewalk improvements to its resurfacing projects as well as greenway upgrades and improvements for ART bus riders.
Now through Phase 3 of the seven-year bond program, 12 miles of City streets have been resurfaced. Pedestrian safety enhancements have been incorporated into the projects, including three flashing signals on the recently completed State Street Project.
Four years into the City’s bond improvement program, Asheville now has:
- 22 more bus shelters with ADA ramps and sidewalk connections;
- New traffic calming projects in two neighborhoods, on Atkins Street and Hazel Mill Road;
- Extensions installed on two greenways, the Reed Creek Greenway Extension and Elsie’s Bridge Greenway Connector;
- Enhanced “single mast arm” traffic signals at five major intersections;
- New sidewalk projects — and more to come.
The City has spent $10.6 million of the $32 million so far. The transportation bond projects are on time and some are even under budget.
Prior to the bond, the City was able to pave 2 to 3 miles per year in projects that did not have the financing to incorporate stormwater enhancements.
“We would have been hard pressed to address some of these streets any other way than through this bond,” said Streets Division Manager Chad Bandy.
Prior to resurfacing of streets identified in the bond program, City Stormwater Division deployed its Pipe Ranger camera into existing stormwater systems along streets to see where aging pipes needed to be replaced. The replacements were done to be proactive in preventing sinkholes forming within our roadways as a result of failing infrastructure. This included stormwater system replacements on Caledonia and Caribou Roads, Brooklyn Road, Kenilworth Road, Lakeshore Drive, MLK Jr. Drive and State Street.
“In coordination with the Streets Division, Stormwater Division was able to save some expense to the City budget by taking advantage of the repaving that is already occurring, therefore reducing the cost of the stormwater installations,” said Stormwater Capital Program Manager, Russ Davis.
Roads that have been resurfaced so far
- All Souls Crescent
- Beverly Road
- Birch Lane
- Brooklyn Road
- Caledonia Road (Biltmore to Richard)
- Caribou Road
- Cisco Road
- Cherry Street
- Kenilworth Road
- Lakeshore Drive (Elkwood to Mt. Vernon)
- MLK Jr. Drive
- Oakland Road
- Old Haywood Road
- Richard Street (portion)
- Royal Pines Drive
- State Street
- Sycamore Drive
Haywood Street, downtown, was also resurfaced as part of the recently completed Haywood Streetscape Project.
Looking ahead, Sulphur Springs Road will be resurfaced in 2021 as part of the bond program. Also, slated for resurfacing in 2021 is Patton Avenue from South Ann Street to the I-240 entrance ramp following stormwater work in this area.
Keep up with the City’s bond program
On Nov. 8, 2016, Asheville voters approved $74 million in public improvements financed by bonds. The public improvements are divided into three categories:
- Housing Affordability, $25 million;
- Parks and Recreation, $17 million; and
- Transportation, $32 million.
“Through an interdepartmental approach, the City of Asheville has been able to maximize dollars spent for these multimodal transportation improvements,” said Capital Projects Director Jade Dundas. “City staff looks forward to delivering more quality projects to enhance the quality of life for our Asheville communities.”
The City’s bond parks projects are on schedule and on budget. Keep up with progress by visiting Capital Project’s Bond Project Dashboard.
RELATED: Update on Parks bond projects.
A look at completed transportation bond projects