- By Kevin D. Thompson Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Lake Worth is in the middle of a $40 million road project and some of the work has stirred up some questions.
“The only concern I have is related to dust,” Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell said. “Keep throwing water down.”
Another query came from Commissioner Andy Amoroso, who wanted to know when work would start on 2nd Avenue South — one of the streets near the city’s mega Street Painting Festival.
Not to worry, said Jamie Brown, the city’s public services director. Work on that road would start Feb. 26, the day after festival concludes.
“There was no way to get it done before the street painting festival,” Brown said.
They were all part of the discussion of Brian Shields’ 4-minute update on the city’s mega project that will likely cause some frustration and disruption on the roads in 2018.
“There is going to be some pain,” said Shields, Lake Worth’s water and utility director. “We’re trying to keep everyone on task and we do appreciate your patience.”
During his presentation, Shields said all first-year projects have been designed and permitted with construction contract awards.
“Much of the work is being done in year 1,” Shields said.
Dust was an issue The Palm Beach Post covered recently when several North M Street residents complained about it on their street and air as their road was being fixed.
“It was terrible,” one resident said, adding how work started on Dec. 11, with workers not returning for three weeks. ““Who knows what’s in that dust. It could be asbestos for all I know.”
Budget for year 1 is $15.2 million, with expenses at $13.8 million. Year 2’s budget is $8.2 million, with expenses at $5.9 million and year 3’s budget is $9.1 million.
All year 1 projects are scheduled to be done by December.
Construction for the second year’s project will start in another two weeks, Shields said. Work is also scheduled to be finished in December.
As for year 3, engineering and design contracts should be done in February, Shields said. It will take about nine months to design. Construction should start in about a year.
Commissioner Omari Hardy said the project will transform Lake Worth. But he wanted to know what happens with the extra money the city is saving from the project.
“Are we allowed to reinvest that?” Hardy asked.
Shields said he fully expects the project to be under the bond amount. “That will lessen the tax burden on the city,” he said.