Home Local News Lovington street construction to take until late March

Lovington street construction to take until late March

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Virginia Cunningham/News-Sun

LOVINGTON — Avenue D between Love Street and Commercial Street is expected to remain closed until late March.

Zoning and Planning Coordinator Crystal Ball said weather has delayed this project “immensely,” with work crews only being able to work about 11 days in January.

“So are you saying we have gone from a creep to a crawl?” Mayor Howard “Robbie” Roberts asked Ball at Monday’s Lovington Commission meeting in regards to the progress of the project.

“Yes, pretty much,” replied Ball.

The “hope” is to open Commercial Street up by the end of March, said Ball.

But, construction crews still have to complete culverts, inlets and pave the road between Commercial Street and Eddy Street.

The rest of the construction will still take time, as construction crews have not been able to do any concrete work because of the freezing temperatures, said Ball.

Other road construction projects in the city are still waiting on funding.

South 9th Street from Avenue D to Avenue K will see improvements if Municipal Arterial Program grant money is awarded to the city, said Ball.

Ball said she is currently writing grants for multiple projects for next fiscal year’s budget.

For the 9th Street project, Ball is writing to obtain a MAP grant to add sidewalks, bike lanes and handicap accessible curbs.

“The MAP grant is specific in it has to be used on a road that connects a main street, highway or Department of Transportation road,” said Ball. “In the case with 9th Street, it connects Artesia Highway to the Avenue R bypass.”

The area of 9th Street between Avenue D and K is a main corridor used for access to the High School and Taylor Middle School, she said. 

Sidewalks and bike lanes in the area will make it easier for children traveling back and forth to school, said Ball.

The 2023 fiscal year’s budget included a MAP grant that went to the planning phase of construction on Jackson Avenue from 9th Street to 17th Street. 

Ball said she is also in the process of writing a Transportation Road Fund grant for the construction phase of the 9th Street project.

“It will be used to widen 9th Street, and put sidewalks in,” Ball said.

Other roads in Lovington were slated to have micro seal done, but on inspection were found to be too badly damaged, said Ball. 

That means more grants have to be written, Ball said.

Ball said she is writing grants for the other roads to receive mill and inlay — where road construction crews will grind down into the upper layer of the existing asphalt in order to get rid of any fractures, ruts and flaws. Crews will then put new pavement on top of the milled surface.

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