By David J. Hill
The Tonawanda News
TOWN OF TONAWANDA —
Since construction began earlier this summer on a new sewer line in the town, many residents have been seen pulling up a lawn chair to watch the work.
Over the next few weeks, they’ll have plenty to look at as the Parker-Fries Sewer Project ramps up, Water Resources Director Ken Maving said during Monday’s town board meeting.
“There’s a lot coming up in the near future here,” Maving said.
Since beginning at Parker Boulevard and Glenalby Road, the project has moved south along Parker. Kandey Co., the West Seneca contractor handling the work, has proceeded approximately 1,500 feet down Parker, Maving reported. “They’ve made great progress because the weather’s been very good,” he said.
Beginning Thursday, Parker Boulevard will be closed between Brompton Road and Greenhaven Terrace. Northbound traffic on Parker will be detoured to Woodstock Avenue, then to Greenhaven Terrace and back onto Parker. Southbound traffic on Parker will be detoured onto the same roads.
“We’re doing shoring operations behind Parker Station at the corner of Woodstock, and that’s going to be a sizable pit — 40-by-60 foot, about 35 feet deep, that they will be dropping a boring machine into to make a boring path, and they’re going to be boring towards Parker Boulevard, just north of Brompton,” Maving said. The town won’t be closing off Brompton or the underpass to the I-290, he added. Homeowners in that area will have access to local traffic.
Once crews get past Braxmar, the intersection at Brighton Road and Parker Boulevard will be closed for several weeks. “We’ll have to take the traffic light down and traffic will be detoured down Braxmar both ways,” Maving said. That closure is expected to begin the week of Aug. 23.
As a result of the upcoming closures, town officials have been in contact with Ken-Ton School District and the NFTA to work out any potential busing issues.
So far, Maving said, the project has gone well. “The residents have been terrific. They have been very understanding,” he said.
“It’s kind of a source of entertainment for a lot of people. They’re actually out there in lawn chairs watching what’s going on,” Maving said, adding that children have taken a particular interest in seeing the big construction equipment operate.
A third public information meeting on construction activities is planned for early October.
In other business Monday night, Town Supervisor Anthony Caruana reported that the town will not participate in an early retirement incentive program put forth by Gov. David Paterson for the state’s hourly municipal workers.
Caruana said the possible savings weren’t enough to make it beneficial for the town to offer the early retirement incentive.
The town’s hourly workers union made some proposals, but what they wanted in return would have negated the savings, Personnel Director Charles Naughton said. “Together those two items didn’t jive,” he said, adding that the savings would be insignificant over time.