College Street work to start Thursday

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Look for the orange barrels to start rolling out Thursday as the contractor for the state Department of Transportation begins work to reconstruct College Street between Highland Avenue and East Maiden Street in Washington.


The reconstruction is part of a two-phase project that started last year with the rebuilding of Lincoln Street. The remaining phase will begin later with demolition of several buildings in the area of Highland and Ridge avenues. It includes repaving the streets in the area and aligning the intersection of Highland and Locust avenues as part of the Route 19 corridor improvement project.


“We’ll start this week on the tree work and close the left lane of the street between Highland and Maiden,” said Ron Holsopple Jr. of Donegal Construction.


Work was to have started March 11, but the weather was uncooperative, said Scott Faieta, PennDOT assistant construction engineer overseeing the project.


“The water company still has tie-ins they are working on closer to Highland Avenue,” Faieta said.


Pennsylvania-American Water Co. has spent the last several months replacing the water line that runs under College. Parking will be prohibited on the street. The work in the left lane should be done in mid- to late July. Work will then start on the right side of the street.


Faieta said crews may mill off the asphalt on both lanes of College. Potholes on the right travel lane would be repaired.


“But if the task is not worth its while, we may not mill the right side of the road but just patch it until we flip-flop,” Faieta said.


Work will begin closer to Maiden Street. PennDOT will coordinate work near Strawberry Avenue. Washington & Jefferson College will advertise for bids on a project that will block off the upper portion of Strawberry so that it will no longer connect Lincoln and College and will increase the school’s green space. The college project also includes sidewalks.


Work in the Highland area should begin around July with the demolition of several buildings, including the former Highland Bar, an old gasoline station and homes.


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