October 12, 2009 in City

Sprague gets finishing touches

Lane striping marks end to months of street work
By The Spokesman-Review
Colin Mulvany photo

Sharp-Line Industries employees Gale Liacos, left, and Jeremy White paint lane dividers on East Sprague Avenue on Thursday. Striping work is the last piece in a series of projects to improve intersections and pavement on Sprague Avenue from University to Evergreen roads.
(Full-size photo)

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A large project to fix Sprague Avenue’s aging pavement through Spokane Valley is wrapping up with striping of the newly smoothed lanes.

Workers from a Spokane company pushed an extruder over the new blacktop to lay a polymer filled with glass beads for the new lane lines.

Nearly $6 million has been spent to rebuild three of the largest intersections and to resurface Sprague from Evergreen to University roads.

“It’s very smooth sailing,” Carolbelle Branch, spokeswoman for the city, said of the new surface.

Prior to the work, she said, “The ruts along Sprague were quite deep, especially across the Pines Road and Sprague intersection. It was really bumpy.”

Sprague and Pines was one of three intersections to get new concrete pavement, along with Evergreen and McDonald roads. Half of the project at Sprague and Pines was done in 2008.

Steve Adams, owner of Sharp-Line Industries of Spokane, said his company is using a highly durable polymer made from methyl methacrylate for the new lane markers. The chemical is mixed at the work site with benzoyl peroxide in plasticizer to create the polymer.

The mix includes reflective glass beads to increase visibility at night, Adams said.

Even with heavy traffic, Adams said, he expects the lane markers to last four or five years. Methyl methacrylate is durable against snowplows and studded tires, he said.

Adams said the lane marker material is now used widely in the region, including on Interstate 90, where the polymer is laid into a sawn groove to keep the marker below the plane of the pavement and to protect it from fast-moving snowplow blades.

Among its advantages is a capacity to bond with later paint applications.

CdA project enters final phase

An improvement project on Fourth Street in Coeur d’Alene is now in its third and final phase between Miller and Harrison avenues.

Work on asphalt, stormwater lines, curbs, gutters, sidewalks and wiring is under way. The project will include light poles, street trees and public art.

It is part of an effort to create a blend of art, shops, restaurants and residences in a pedestrian-friendly neighborhood north of downtown. A ribbon cutting on Oct. 22 is expected following completion.

ISP offers safe-driving classes

For the seventh year, the Idaho State Police will hold free road-safety classes on Oct. 24 at 9 a.m. and Nov. 7 at noon at the ISP regional office, 615 W. Wilbur Ave.

The class will teach winter driving skills, including preparedness, as well as instruction on how to avoid aggressive and intoxicated drivers or other potential driving hazards. The class lasts for nearly three hours.

To reserve a space in the class, call (208) 209-8620 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Campaign-free zone

With campaign season in high gear, the Washington Department of Transportation sent out a reminder to candidates and their supporters last week to keep campaign signs off the state highway right of way.

Only traffic control signs are allowed there, and state highway maintenance crews will remove signs placed within the right of way, said Al Gilson, DOT spokesman.

Slow going

Spokane city street crews have been repairing Boone Avenue from Monroe to Maple streets during business hours, which could result in closures or delays. It could also affect parking in the busy area near the Spokane Transit Authority headquarters and the county courthouse.

In addition, Third Avenue from Freya to Havana streets; Trent Avenue from Freya east to Mission Avenue; and Myrtle Street from Trent to Mission are closed with local access only for sewer line work.

Work wraps up

Resurfacing of U.S. Highway 395 from Loon Lake to Immel Road north of Chewelah was expected to be completed Friday, allowing traffic to return to normal without the delays that have slowed travel along the corridor since midsummer.

More slowdowns

Construction work on Bigelow Gulch Road from Havana Street to Palmer Road continues. Traffic could be reduced to one lane. Motorists are asked to watch for flaggers.

Also in the county, Electric Avenue from Geiger Boulevard to Thomas Mallen Road is closed for utility work.

Freya Street from 57th to 61st avenues is closed for sidewalk work.

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