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Mystic hoping history doesn't repeat with Streetscape work

By Greg Smith

Publication: The Day

Published February 03. 2014 4:00AM

Groton - Town officials and Mystic merchants alike are hoping that the second phase of the Mystic Streetscape project is quick and painless.

The town awarded a contract earlier this month to a Ludlow, Mass., company that is expected to start the bulk of the work on the beautification project along Water Street by mid-March. H.M. Nunes and Sons Construction Inc., the lowest of four bidders on the upcoming project, is expected to finish by the end of June. The company has performed similar work in Niantic.

The project comes on the heels of the more extensive first phase, which focused on West Main Street. That project was plagued by delays and, coupled with downtown bridge repairs, caused disruption for downtown businesses.

The work will include the extension of sidewalks, granite curbing, landscaping, drainage and on-street parking improvements along Water Street. Work will extend from the entrance to the Mystic Art Association to the intersection of Water Street and Noank Road.

Project manager Rick Norris, a member of the city's planning and development department, said in contrast to the major work in phase one that included underground utilities and the removal of 15 utility poles, this project includes limited excavation.

"It's nowhere near the magnitude of work that occurred in phase one," Norris said.

The work will be completed in four phases, starting on the east side of the road, with the final phase being the paving of the entire stretch of roadway. He said the contractor is required to keep two travel lanes open during the project.

The project will add six or seven parking spaces on the east side of Water Street.

Phase one of the project included 3,500 feet of new granite curb, 30 new light poles, the widening of sidewalks and placement of benches and planters along Main Street.

Plans and further details of the streetscape project are available online, in the planning and development section of the town's website at www.groton-ct.gov.

g.smith@theday.com

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