City of Maryville workers and members of Nodaway County's "tube crew" were on the job Wednesday at both ends of Depot Street performing underground infrastructure work related to a couple of projects that will largely rebuild the mostly gravel thoroughfare between East First Street and South Avenue.
The city's portion of this week's efforts involved shutting off a water main at the corner of Depot and East First, which will allow Loch Sand & Construction to begin reconstructing the badly dilapidated street as a permanent concrete road complete with curbs, gutters and a storm water drainage system.
Water and Sewer Superintendent Eric Lance said that closing the main required shutting off water to two businesses, a residence and an empty commercial structure while work was in progress, but that service was to be restored by Wednesday afternoon.
Motorists driving up and down First Street were forced to make a one-block detour around the worksite.
A half-mile to the south, a three-member county crew was taking on a considerably larger project, removing a decades-old tube used to direct water from a large gully underneath the road and replacing it with a larger culvert more than 9 feet in circumference and 70 feet long.
The new tube is actually a converted railroad tanker car fabricated at a plant in Oklahoma. A special "stretchable" trailer was used to transport the tube to Nodaway County as a single unit.
But before installing the tube, the county crew had to take the old culvert out in pieces, which was the same way it was put in.
County officials said that at one time, in order to save money, it was common practice simply to jam differently sized pipes together in order to form a single, long culvert, and that the Depot Street crossing consisted of just such a structure. The tube crossing is located just south of New Nodaway Humane Society animal shelter.
The new tube's one-piece construction and greater size should significantly improve drainage underneath the rebuilt road and also prevent the shifting and settling that had caused a large sink hole and other problems.
Installing the new tube has been complicated by nearby water and sewer lines, both of which are owned by the city, however those problems were worked out during a couple of meetings late this summer between city and Polk Township officials and the Nodaway County Commission.
All three levels of government have a stake in the Depot project. In addition to the underground mains, the city owns the stretch of road between First Street and the Humane Society and is spending $1 million to rebuild most of its portion of the badly dilapidated roadway.
The street, which is lined by several light industrial operations and carries a lot of truck traffic, had become so rough as to be almost devoid of pavement. Depending on the weather, city officials expect the work to be completed sometime next spring.
Page 2 of 2 - On the south side of the Halsey, Depot is owned by Polk Township, which is paving its portion of the road with remaining revenues from the "Pave Me for Pennies" property tax levy collected between 2004 and 2008. Tube installation is the responsibility of the county.
The city's portion of the project extends only to Halsey Street, which will leave a strip of graveled driving surface between the Halsey/Depot intersection and the Humane Society shelter. Nothing is certain yet, but city officials have said they will likely surface the remaining 100-yard stretch of road with asphalt, thus creating a fully paved north-south corridor on the east edge of town.