By Ralph Echtinaw
Downtown St. Louis will be a bit of a mess next week, as the decades-old pavement is torn up and replaced.
Contractor Central Asphalt plans to start work on Monday, June 17, and be finished no later than Tuesday, June 25. “But if all goes well and weather cooperates work could be complete before then,” said DPW Superintendent Mark Abbott via email.
The plan is to grind off the existing asphalt and replace it with three inches of new asphalt. Cost to the city is $215,000.
North Mill Street will be closed to all traffic and parking while the work is going on. Motorists will not be able to cross, park, or drive on North Mill Street during this time.
Ideally, the city would do a total reconstruction of North Mill, replacing water and storm sewer lines in addition to asphalt. But other pressing road projects will consume available funds through 2028, said City Manager Kurt Giles.
The downside of repaving North Mill without replacing storm sewer and water lines is that future problems below will necessitate tearing up pavement in spots to conduct repairs.
“We run the risk of having to do underground repairs in areas with newer pavement but see that as reasonable considering how the existing pavement has deteriorated,” Giles said via email.
Abbott said he will use the old asphalt “for other road maintenance, i.e. gravel roads and shoulders. This saves us about half the cost of purchasing the material from other sources.”