Frisco presents plans for next phase of two-year Step Up Main Street project
Phase 2 timeline
Phase 2 of Frisco’s Step Up Main Street project covers three blocks between 4th and 7th avenues. The phase is slated to begin in April and end in mid-June, although town officials warn that nasty weather in April and May could cause delays. For weekly updates beginning April 6, see www.friscogov.com or call the construction hotline at 970-668-0836 ex. 9.
- Light pole replacement
- Trench and conduit digging
- Drain pipe installation
- New seating installation (6th and Main Street bus stop)
- Sidewalk removal
- Sidewalk pouring
- Concrete removal (curbs and gutters)
- Asphalt removal (roadways and on-street parking)
- Intersection concrete pouring
- Brick paver installation
- Asphalt paving
- Road striping and marking
- Construction clean up
Frisco’s main drag is a month away from its next major face-lift and, barring any late-spring snowstorms, the two-year, multimillion-dollar Step Up Main Street project is right on schedule.
Town officials yesterday hosted two open houses to meet with residents and answered questions about Step Up’s Phase 2, a three-month, $1.8 million project that will close sidewalks and portions of Main Street between April and mid-June.
The phase includes asphalt removal, sidewalk pouring, electrical work, pipe digging and intersection closures. During construction, which could include work on Saturdays, businesses between Fourth and Seventh avenues will remain open as asphalt and sidewalks are removed to make way for new, pedestrian-friendly elements like brick pavers and wooden lampposts.
While town officials plan to keep at least one lane of traffic open at all times, unknowns like nasty mud-season weather and labor-intensive intersection work might require closures.
Town manager Bill Efting says construction projects always run into hiccups, but he’s confident town staff and contractors learned enough from Phase 1 last autumn to skirt any major delays.
“I think we built some good trust with the first phase, so the onus is on us to continue that,” Efting said at the open house. “I think it really helped to have that first phase. This one will be more difficult, there’s no doubt about it, but I think people are ready for what will happen.”
Efting also believes it will help to have the same contractor for both of the initial phases. Columbine Hills Concrete of Silverthorne will handle the majority of sidewalk and asphalt construction, picking up where it left off with pipe digging for Phase 1.
James Letson, the project manager with Columbine Hills, says the Frisco face-lift is similar to the four-year revitalization project the company completed in Breckenridge last year.
“We’re really familiar with this type of work,” Letson said. “This is what we do as a company. We have the experience with these Main Street projects, and we as a company pride ourselves on applying the resources we have to make sure projects get completed on time.”
For Letson, Efting and just about everyone involved in the project, weather is the most pressing concern. Spring and fall are wildly unpredictable seasons, which led Breckenridge to spread its Main Street project over four years, with construction limited to the post-ski lull.
By completing two phases each off-season, Frisco’s project is projected to last just two years — if the weather cooperates.
“This is a very big challenge, this particular phase,” assistant public works director Rick Higgins said. “In the end of April, we’ll probably regroup and take another look at the schedule to make sure everything is getting done when it needs to get done.”
PHASE BY PHASE`
Given the scope of construction, Phase 2 promises to be the largest portion of the Step Up Main Street project. Phase 1 became a trial run for the town’s construction plans, with drainage work from Seventh Avenue to Madison Avenue and intersection face-lifts at both extremes of Main Street. Phase 3 is slated to begin early this fall and wrap up by Oct. 30. Phase 4, the final phase, will begin and end on roughly the same time frame as Phase 2 in the spring of 2016.
Along with the open house events, officials have built a communications plan to keep residents and business owners in the loop as the project moves forward.
The plan includes informal coffee talk sessions, weekly online updates and, most important for officials like Efting, in-person meetings with folks along Main Street — “pounding the pavement,” he calls it — even as the pavement itself is being torn out and replaced.
“If Higgins or I are walking down the street, grab us with concerns and questions,” Efting said. “The key to this is communication because we know there will be bumps. There have been bumps with every construction project I’ve ever been involved with, and having that open back and forth is key.”
Frisco residents already appreciate the town’s open dialogue. About 20 locals attended the midmorning open house, including Pat and Bob Feuerriegel. The residents of four years live a few miles off of Main Street in The Reserve at Frisco, but they’re anxious for the main drag to get a much-needed reimagining.
“This is home, this is my town,” Pat Feuerriegel said. “It’s exciting — the changes are fantastic. It will be inconvenient, but it won’t shut Main Street down altogether. They’ve kept everyone in the loop the entire time, so I think it will be just fine.”
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