Construction to detour residents for a year

GREENVILLE – Greenville motorists will need to steer clear of Sweitzer/4th Street for the next year or more as work to rebuild the road is scheduled to get underway next week.

Councilman Doug Schmidt questioned the road closed signs stating how long the road will be closed, “The signs they brought in yesterday, I assume they changed the dates on them. They brought one in that was sitting out in full view that said the road will be closed for 375 days.” Safety Service Director Curt Garrison responded, “That is correct. Technically the road will be closed for 375 days.”

Garrison explained that even though they are doing the road in phases, the entire road is closed to public travel for 375 days. “We will maintain as much local access as possible,” Garrison shared.

Trees will be cleared first and then Brumbaugh Construction will begin milling the entire section of road from Pine Street to the curve on Sweitzer/4th Street. He noted, the road from the curve to Sycamore may also be milled, but not entirely to leave a drivable surface. They hope to have the first phase of construction completed by late fall with the end of paving season. Work will continue on the second phase as weather allows during the winter season.

For the first phase, parking will be restricted from Pine to the curve and resident are asked to use their alleyway parking. Homes without access to the alley will be required to use side-street parking. There will be no on-street parking. Garrison pointed out the property owners have been advised of the situation.

“We waited a long time for this project to come to fruition so we are excited about that,” he said. The city completed infrastructure projects in that area last year.

The city will return to the Greenville City School Board of Education meeting to once again pitch the merits of a 30-year Downtown Revitalization District (DRD). The nine DRDs would encompass 90-acres and the city would get 70 percent of the increase in property values in the form of a TIF (Tax Increment Financing) to be used to revitalize businesses, infrastructure, streetscaping, etc. According to Garrison, the school board balked at the idea of losing nearly 70 percent of revenue from year 11 through 30 of the DRD.

Although a proposal was not submitted by the board, Garrison suggested they wanted 50 percent of the city’s 70 percent, which would leave the city with 20 percent to reinvest into the community. Councilmen Jeff Whitaker and John Hensley suggested going back to the board and offering a 50-50 split.

The city wants a 30-year DRD to get the most out of the program. However, council could choose to do a 10-year DRD without school board’s approval.

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