Auburn piggybacks street projects to save time and money

Instead of having to tear up streets and sidewalks again in 2021 to install a signal and effect future sewer repairs, why not add those future projects to street work unfolding now?

On July 20, the Auburn City Council approved increasing by $72,200 the contract amount to a project that rehabilitates and preserves the existing pavement on Auburn Way North between 8th Street Northeast and Highway 18.

As originally approved by council, the Auburn Way North preservation contract called for the installation of two 12-inch water mains across Auburn Way North at 2nd Street Northeast and 3rd Street Northeast. The contract also called for storm system improvements at 1st Street Northeast and 2nd Street Southeast, and updating curb ramps and signal equipment to meet ADA requirements.

As of Monday, however, the contract now incluides improvements to the existing storm system at the Auburn Way North and 1st Street Northeast intersection, in anticipation of a project to replace the existing traffic signal system at the intersection next year.

Completing the storm work as part of the Auburn Way North Preservation project, city officials say, will reduce the overall amount of money spent paving the intersection by not having to complete additional pavement work that would otherwise be needed after the new signal is installed.

The motion passed July 20 also allows the city to:

• Eliminate two sanitary sewer/storm drainage cross-connections that were recently discovered in the intersection of 1st Street Northeast and Auburn Way North.

• Replace a section of sewer main on 2nd Street Southeast that has exceeded its useful life. This section of sanitary sewer pipe had been scheduled to be replaced as part of a city project scheduled for 2021 that will reconstruct 2nd Street Southeast.

City council also approved an increase of $70,000 in the total maximum authorized contract amount for its 2020 local street street reconstruction and preservation project.

This project calls for reconstruction, grinding, repairing, and overlaying of local streets, pavement preservation at the Auburn Mountain View Cemetery, and for repainting intersection pavement markings — crosswalks and stop bars — throughout the city.