N.E. roads to get re­pairs

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By JANE BELLMYER

jbellmyer@ce­cil­whig.com

— Driv­ers who travel Red Toad and Goose­mar roads will need to pay even more at­ten­tion to con­struc­tion signs this month.

Added to the con­struc­tion of a turn lane from U.S. Route 40 onto Red Toad Road, Ce­cil County Depart­ment of Pub­lic Works has closed Goose­mar Road where a cul­vert is be­ing re­placed, ac­cord­ing to Scott Flani­gan, DPW di­rec­tor.

“The cul­vert had de­te­ri­o­rated to the point where we felt it was at risk of col­lapse,” Flani­gan said Mon­day.

Emer­gency ser­vices and the pub­lic schools were no­ti­fied last week of the clo­sure so am­bu­lances, fire trucks and school buses are aware.

Add to that, state trans­porta­tion of­fi­cials have

NORTH EAST

pushed up re­pairs for the con­crete over­pass that car­ries In­ter­state 95 over Red Toad Road. That work was slated to be­gin in Au­gust, but will in­stead be­gin May 16.

John Sales, di­rec­tor of com­mu­ni­ca­tions for the Mary­land Trans­porta­tion Au­thor­ity, said en­gi­neers re­al­ized a win­dow of op­por­tu­nity to get the project com­pleted ear­lier.

“The phase for where the county will have to close Red Toad Road (near Route 40) is af­ter June 10,” he said. “This is good tim­ing.”

“We had been talk­ing with Ce­cil County DPW and the (State High­way Ad­min­is­tra­tion) to get them on board,” Sales said adding, they got the go “as long as we get it done by June 10.”

Com­muters re­ported last month see­ing chunks falling from the con­crete un­der­struc­ture.

“That might have had

some­thing to do with it,” Sales said, but added that the tim­ing was key.

That work will in­volve re­mov­ing con­crete from one pier, mak­ing re­pairs and re­plac­ing the con­crete.

Goose­mar Road, where it passes over an un­named stream, is blocked this week for re­place­ment. While pub­lic works crews opened up the sur­face of the road Mon­day to get a bet­ter look and brought in Mead­ows Con­struc­tion and the re­place­ment cul­vert, Flani­gan said the ac­tual work has not started.

“We have to get a per­mit from the Mary­land Depart­ment of the En­vi­ron­ment to do the work,” he said. “MDE has an ex­pe­dited per­mit­ting process for emer­gen­cies.”

While do­ing other work in the area, crews no­ticed the se­vere rust­ing in­side the pipe that car­ries the stream un­der Goose­mar Road, Flani­gan said. It was de­cided that the re­pairs were needed im­me­di­ately.

“(This was) rather than wait for it to hap­pen while a ve­hi­cle is go­ing across,” he said.

Flani­gan said the work — weather per­mit­ting — should be fin­ished by the end of this week. That’s good news for the MDTA, which plans to use Goose­mar Road as the de­tour route when the over­pass is be­ing re­paired.

“We’ve been told it should be open in time for May 16,” Sales said.

All the while, work con­tin­ues on Route 40 at Red Toad, Flani­gan said.

“Jersey bar­ri­ers are up to close the shoul­der. They’ve done the tree re­moval and are pre­par­ing to cut the em­bank­ment back to give us the space we need,” he said, adding the an­tic­i­pated date of com­ple­tion is the end of July.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JES­SICA IAN­NETTA

Ce­cil Col­lege has six des­ig­nated gen­der-neu­tral bath­rooms.

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

Ralph Hilditch, with Mead­ows Con­struc­tion, tight­ens the ten­sion on safety tape on both sides of the con­struc­tion zone on Goose­mar Road near North East Mon­day. Ce­cil County Pub­lic Works crews dug up the cul­vert over a stream with plans to re­place the rust­ing pipe be­fore it col­lapses.

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