N. 1st Place to Close on Aug. 8 as Utility, Road Surface Work Resumes

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The first of three major Capital Improvement Plan projects to upgrade underground utilities and the road surface on North 1st Place will resume Monday, Aug. 8.

Work on North 1st Place between W. Hartley Avenue and W. Hermiston Avenue may last up to two months and traffic will be directed to use N.W. Third Street as a detour.

Utility crews will remove the 40-year-old Lift Station #6 and replace it with an upgraded version with additional capacity to prevent backups and overflows. That work will be followed immediately by a resumed effort to bore underneath the railroad tracks to tie a gravity sewer line into the existing main.

The boring project began in April, but crews hit a metal underground object presumed to be a buried railcar near the tracks that was impenetrable using equipment available at the time. The updated project will require a high-force auger and can’t be completed at the same time as the lift station replacement because it may cause damage to the exposed components.

“You’ll always run into some surprises on an underground project, and we certainly did on this one,” said Hermiston Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan. “It made the most sense to resume the project immediately after the lift station replacement to limit the impact on traffic and local businesses. These projects replace an outdated lift station and eliminate the expense of maintaining another while setting us up for the next phase of the 1st Place upgrades.”

Two other projects are slated to break ground in the next year on North 1st Place that will greatly improve the infrastructure and impact traffic in the area until late 2023.

The first is a water line replacement to completely overhaul the nearly 100-year-old water main running the length of N. First Place from Hermiston Avenue to Elm Avenue. Work is expected to begin in the fall of 2022 and continue into late fall, requiring significant closures throughout.

The next is a $4.5 million roadway reconstruction project funded by state transportation dollars approved in 2017. This project will rebuild the existing roadway and install sidewalk, curbs, gutters, and a recreational trail to make the road a better north/south arterial roadway west of the railroad tracks. Work is expected to begin in early 2023 and conclude in Fall 2023.

Capital Improvement Plan projects, timelines, cost estimates, and updates can be found at www.hermistonprojects.com.

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