Eliza Lane project closed out

Chris Berendt Staff Writer

December 22, 2013

Several dirt streets north of Clinton now have asphalt thanks to a community development project that also brought utility upgrades to a number of neighborhoods in Clinton

A public hearing regarding the closeout of the FY10 Eliza Lane Contingency Project was held earlier this week, during which City of Clinton Public Works and Utilities director Jeff Vreugdenhil updated the City Council on the impact the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) project has made in recent months.

The CDBG project targeted Eliza Lane and several adjacent streets, including Abron, Jerome and Don streets, for comprehensive utilities and street resurfacing. The project has been ongoing since the project was awarded in December 2012 to Columbus Utilities of Whiteville, the low bidder with a bid of $597,601,50, following a re-bid.

Clinton officials said the Eliza Lane project will improve the quality of life in several neighborhoods by improving streets, fire service and water and sewer infrastructure in the area. A notable part of the project was to pave what have long been completely dirt streets on Eliza, Abron and Jerome Streets.

The project additionally includes new water and sewer lines in the neighborhood, as well as fire hydrants. The area, located immediately adjacent to the city limits off U.S. 701, consists of 22 residences that do not have city water or sewer services. City officials said the streets have long been in “extremely bad condition,” some being impassable after a heavy rain.

That is not expected to be a problem any longer.

Vreugdenhil reviewed the budget and activities accomplished through the city’s project, which is nearing completion. The city is in the process of closing out the program, he said.

In all, the project installed 2,300 linear feet of asphalt streets, 2,400 linear feet of gravity and force sewer mains, 2,000 linear feet of 6-inch water line, five new hydrants and one new lift station with 100 gallon per minute capability, which will serve for future use. The project also implemented five new fire hydrants, looped water main from U.S. 701 to Don Street and connected 17 water and sewer customers.

Three wells and 17 septic systems were abandoned in favor of 27 new water and sewer taps, for existing and future customers.

“That’s beyond the 17 that were occupied customers,” said Vreugdenhil. “Because the water and sewer is on the street we went ahead and put in the lateral, and water and sewer taps, for future use so when someone wants one of those they will then have to pay for the tap.”

Of the 2,400 linear feet of gravity and force sewer mains, about 900 feet of which is force main from the lift station back to the gravity sewer. There was also 1,400 linear feet of sewer laterals installed.

The city received the CDBG funding in 2011 for the purpose of making road, water and sewer improvements to serve 17 households within the Eliza Lane neighborhood. The grant, in the amount of $572,765, was matched with $217,785 from the city, split evenly between the 2011-12 and 2012-13 budgets.

According to Vreugdenhil, the budget breakdown consisted of $141,900 in streets; $114,375 in water; $268,990 in sewer; $47,500 in administration; and the $217,785 in local matching funds.

At this time, all CDBG and local funds have been expended within the program, the public works director said. Now that all activities are complete, the city is preparing to close out the grant, which requires a final public hearing to obtain citizen comments related to what has been accomplished.

No comments were given during the hearing, after which the Council approved closing out the project, but Vreugdenhil urged everyone to go and see what has been done.

“I welcome you to go see it,” he said. “It’s completed and it’s under budget and we had an excellent contractor who did a great job.”

Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at