Several businessmen in along Curry Street north of Musser Street expressed concern Thursday night that the planned revitalization project starting next month would cause them more disruption than even the Carson Street project did in 2016.
The project runs from Musser Street north to Robinson Street and will make improvements similar to what Q&D Construction did to Carson Street in what City Engineer Dan Stucky said was an attempt “to create that unified downtown.”
Stucky said about a third of the $3.22 million project cost will be in utility projects — water, sewer and electrical upgrades to infrastructure that, in some cases, is 70 years old.
Businessmen including Steve Brown of Carson Cigar Company questioned Stucky and managers from Q&D Construction about what they can do to minimize disruption and ensure that customers whether in vehicles or on foot can get to their businesses.
He said during the Carson Street reconstruction, he lost 15 percent of his business for most of a year and he expects that Curry Street will cost him 25-30 percent.
“I don’t think there’s a damned thing anybody can do about it,” Brown said adding he just wants the city and contractor to know that’s the impact.
Mark Schmidt of Carson Jewelry and Loan urged the contractor to make every effort to keep as many parking spaces in the area available as possible. He and David Johnson said they need as much warning of closures and any other disruptions as possible.
But Jeff Bean of Q&D said if he tried to tell business owners two to four weeks in advance where construction closures would be, “I’d be lying.” He said the problem is similar to what the company ran into redoing Carson Street: Until they actually start digging, they won’t know what’s underground. He said the water line runs north-south through that area but that the sewer lines run east to west but that along Carson Street there were numerous surprises that delayed progress.
Stucky said the project includes a lot of landscaping features, pavers, new and wider sidewalks and street lights. Electric LED lighting will replace the old gas lamps he said are hard to maintain and don’t generate much light.
He said there also will be some work on the Telegraph Square.
The work also includes removing all the old overhead transformers and power poles in the corridor.
Bean and Stucky said the plan is to try close no more than one block of Curry at a time but that they can’t guarantee that. He promised that Q&D will work with each business to minimize the impact of access problems as well as sewer and water shut offs as utilities are replaced. Bean said they can schedule waterline and sewer work during times when the businesses are closed.
Stucky said there will be frequent updates on the Carson Proud website to keep everyone up on progress and planned closures. And Bean promised that, if a business calls with a problem, they will respond as quickly as possible to take care of the issue.
Construction starts in mid-April and the company has promised the city they will be done by Nevada Day.