Telford Street Open to Traffic

Having completed site grading and paving and the completion of the STAR market facade, the new Telford Street extension from Western Avenue to Holton Street is open to the public.  This marks an important milestone for the development and the neighborhood. 

What is done: earth grading, paving of the first two pavement layers, road striping, east (Brighton Mills) side curbing, temporary asphalt sidewalk, temporary site lighting

What remains to be done in the spring: finish paving, road & bike lane striping, permanent lighting, street trees and landscaping

In 2013, the west (Charlesview) side improvements will be installed as the development nears completion.  In the meantime, the newly opened road segment will allow for safe vehicle and pedestrian access to the neighborhood.

Responsiveness to Community Concerns

As construction activity continues to ramp up on the site, a few neighbors have recently raised some concerns about the impact of some aspects of construction in the neighborhood.  While the construction of 450,000 square feet of new buildings in an active residential and commercial area is impossible to completely conceal, the developer and builder have taken several steps to respond to these concerns:

Construction Dust

Much of the recently excavated earth is being kept on the site to re-use as backfill.  This saves the immense cost and waste of hauling dirt away, only to bring more in later.  As of last week, however, there was a substantial amount of stockpiled earth piled high on the site, exposing it to the wind. 

Response: the site contractor has cut the piles to half their height and covered them with anchored plastic sheeting.  JMA has installed dust monitors at the residential perimeters of the site to track any airborne dust.  Any exposed areas of dirt will be kept wet, as needed.

Safe Access for Vehicles and Pedestrians

During the simultaneous construction of Charlesview and the new McDonald’s restaurant, we have worked to maintain continual access to Brighton Mills.  During the latter stages of Telford Street construction, that access has shifted many times, sometimes without adequate wayfinding.

Response: while the repeated shifts of the past few weeks have been necessary, they are coming to an end.  As of this week, permanent access to the reconfigured STAR market parking area will be opened to the public, via the northern half of the Telford Street extension and a new sidewalk (asphalt until the concrete sidewalk is installed in the spring).  Clear, safe public access is restored.  By the end of the month, the full length of Telford Street will be open to foot and car traffic, and after the first of the year, a new traffic signal will ease movement around the Telford & Western intersection.

Truck Routing

With dozens of truck trips every day coming and going from the site carrying away excavated soil and delivering concrete and steel, the occassional construction truck has been seen on North Harvard and Cambridge Streets (off the Construction Management Plan route).  Both the neighborhood and the develoopment team recognize that keeping trucks off neighborhood streets is a priority. 

Response: JMA has posted signs at site exits prohibiting the use of North Harvard Street.  They regularly map out the proper route through posted signs, hand-out flyers and weekly coordination meetings.  They will spot check their own haulers by personally monitoring North Harvard traffic occassionally during delivery hours.

With independent haulers on the job, including many new ones every week, we must remain vigilent, and so TCB and JMA are working to do more, instituting more frequent notices and reminders to subcontractors, and instituting financial penalties for noncompliance.  

 

The development team continues to appreciate the community’s support of this major construction effort, and we are always open to concerns and suggestions to ease the impact of the construction process; if you have any, please contact us.

Concrete Foundation Progress Despite the Rain

Make a two-acre hole in the ground, exposing earth all the way down to the clay layer.  Then add about four inches of rain and tons of heavy construction equipment.  Those have been the working conditions on the Charlesview site this week, and yet substantial progress has been made.

Upon reaching the bottom of the western portion of the excavation last week, JMA has coordinated the sitework and concrete subcontractors to place, form and pour the foundations for the perimeter wall of the garage.  All this week, workers have had to continually manage the rainwater by trenching, draining, pumping and drying the areas where concrete is to be poured.  Despite the challenging conditions, the first several hundred feet of foundation have been poured, including the full length of continuous footing along Litchfield Street, and about a third each of the northern and southern foundations.  Next week, forms will go in place to start pouring the actual garage walls.

Rebar is moved into place for the future south wall fo the garage

 

 

 

 

Workers progress the foundation of the new north wall of the garage, mitigating accumulated stormwater as they go

Hitting Bottom

The Garage Excavation begins to reach the bottom in portions of the site

Excavation continues for the parking garage, with a constant flow of trucks hauling excavated dirt away to disposal facilities.  But certain areas have reached the bottom of the garage excavation and are ready to begin setting the first concrete foundations.  The concrete subcontractor, JL Marshall & Sons, will be coordinating with JMA and the site subcontractor to set the first forms and start pouring concrete, likely early next week, weather depending.

The installation of the foundations and garage slab is expected to take about 3 months.  By March, we hope to be erecting the garage deck.

Note that the Telford Street opening will likely occur a week or two from now, a slight delay from this previous post.  This is due to some additional coordination of grading and paving to ensure that Telford Street, the new McDonalds, and the existing STAR market parking lot all come together as smoothly as possible.