Meanwhile, Energy Corridor District continues progress on plans to transform Eldridge/Memorial Intersection
Energy Corridor motorists can expect continuing roadwork on Memorial Drive as the $40 million reconstruction project is now at least nine months behind its original mid-2018 completion schedule.
The result is that the Dairy Ashford Street and Memorial Drive intersection will be under construction for another six months. After that, the schedule depends upon coordinating a number of different, significant city public works projects that tie into the reconstruction project at Kirkwood Road and Memorial Drive.
Delays have mounted up with change orders to improve the project’s stormwater drainage component, various contractor issues on concrete pouring and tying the reconstruction effort into other, major drainage projects, according to City of Houston Council Member Greg Travis’s office.
Oscar Renda Contracting, Inc. initially wanted to work simultaneously on the Memorial intersections at Kirkwood and Eldridge Parkway. But, local community members supported by Council Member Travis believed that two major intersections under construction at the same time would cause undue hardship for commuters and nearby residents.
Completed individually, each intersection would require about eight months of work, or two months on each compass corner of the intersection.
Part of the delay, according to City of Houston Public Works, involves “differing field conditions” at Kirkwood. In one instance, city inspectors found that new concrete laid down for the road was uneven and bumpy, forcing the contractor to use a milling machine to polish the surface.
The initial scope of work at Kirkwood has also been complicated by the need to coordinate construction with other major public works efforts now underway, such as the Nottingham Drainage Project that will reconstruct Kirkwood from Memorial to Britoak Lane near IH-10. An additional road drainage project is now moving forward along Kirkwood from Buffalo Bayou to Westheimer.
Another contributor to the delays is the city’s change order to improve stormwater capacity by installing a massive 84-inch pipe under the Kirkwood and Memorial intersection and a 9-foot by 7-foot concrete stormwater detention box heading north on Kirkwood from Memorial.
Meanwhile, the Energy Corridor District’s plans to make the Eldridge and Memorial intersection far safer for people walking and bicycling is moving forward.
“When the Memorial Drive Reconstruction Project makes its way to Eldridge, we’ll have everything in place to begin our significant enhancements to this busy intersection,” explains Fabiana Demaire, urban planner for the District.
City officials recently approved the District’s enhancement plans for the intersection involving the pavement, sidewalks improvements and bridge over nearby Turkey Creek. The District is nearing completion on its work to gain landscape easements from property owners representing each corner of the intersection.
For more details about the Memorial Drive reconstruction, visit Council Member Greg Travis’s project webpage here.