East Main Street underpass preliminary work to start in September, finished in 2018

Delays for the East Main Street Underpass have been plenty, but now City Engineer Wayne Carl expects work to begin in September.

Carl tells Galesburg’s Morning News on WGIL the most recent hold up was reaching a construction and maintenance agreement between the Illinois Department of Transportation — the project’s chief agent — and BNSF.

“We had to spend quite a bit of time with BNSF engineers,” he says, “working with IDOT engineers and our consultants going back and forth to try to get the most economical structure that we could that would suit the railroad but would also not be very expensive from IDOT perspectives.”

Carl says that at no time will the railroad be completely shut down.

Each of the three tracks will have a corresponding bridge. While one bridge is being constructed, the other tracks can be left to run.

Now he says IDOT is awaiting BNSF to sign an easement so that construction can begin.

“We expect that to get approved here in a couple weeks,” Carl says, “and we expect to be on the July letting with the project and hopefully the contractor will start first of September of this year.”

If contractors get to start working on time and everything goes according to plan the underpass should be complete by September 2018.

Carl also says roadwork on West Seminary Street should be finished by July 1 and then workers can turn their attention to Fremont Street from Seminary to Farnham.

That stretch will undergo sidewalk and curb repairs as well as having two layers of asphalt laid.

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