After months of planning and years of discussion, it looks like the sidewalk project for the Hannibal downtown area is about to get underway.
Bleigh Construction is the contractor on the $828,000 project and the plan is for them to start at the far north end of Main Street and work their way south to Broadway.
And a s Hannibal City Engineer Mark Rees looks over plans for the upcoming sidewalk project, he compares the project to a Phoenix. He said at one point many, many years ago, it was all but dead, but over the past couple of years it was brought back to life and now, the Main Street area will have a completely different look a year from now.
" That's right, it's nice to have a successful low bidder, with an affordable project that didn't come in over budget, and soon we should be breaking ground and making some progress," Rees said.
That progress calls for corner's that will be ADA compliant and new street lights for the area that's being redone. The street will also see new curbs and gutters and when it's all over, it will be something that resembles a total makeover and will leave people smiling.
" It is nice because even during this project, some groups and entities were skeptical like maybe they should be on whether or not we could pull it off. But you just have to have patience and let the process work out, and finally after all that effort it looks like we're getting ready to go," Rees said.
Rees said the construction schedule that Bleigh is submitting to the city will see a stoppage of work when major festivals and events are being held in and around Main Street. That includes the F all F estival in October , holiday shopping between Thanksgiving and Christmas as well as the Twain on Main Festival in late May. He hopes the project will be completed in time for next years National Tom Sawyer Days.
Another aspect to the capital project will be the milling of Main Street from North Street south to near Warren Barrett Drive. After the milling, there will be a two inch asphalt overlay. This project will also include parts of Hill, Center and Bird Streets in the downtown area.