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Olympic construction ahead of schedule

A first coat of asphalt is laid in front of City Hall on the second phase of the Olympic Avenue project, from Fourth Street south to Second Street, Friday, July 27. -
A first coat of asphalt is laid in front of City Hall on the second phase of the Olympic Avenue project, from Fourth Street south to Second Street, Friday, July 27.
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ARLINGTON The city of Arlington recently offered updates on ongoing projects and unresolved issues.
City of Arlington Capital Projects Manager Paul Ellis explained that the North Olympic Avenue Reconstruction Project is proceeding within budget and ahead of schedule, as Olympic Avenue from Second to Maple streets was closed to vehicle traffic July 30.
Were a couple of weeks ahead, Ellis said. After wed estimated a completion date around mid-October, Strider Construction had to extend their schedule by five working days, so in a way, were actually three weeks ahead of schedule.
Olympic Avenue from Fourth to Second streets was reopened to vehicle traffic July 28, after the road was paved July 27. Sidewalks are being installed in this section, starting at Fourth Street, and Ellis predicted these installations would be complete by Aug. 3.
The Steak House at 111 Olympic Ave. has already moved up its closing time, from 10 p.m. to 4 p.m., but owner Lisa Easley credited the city with keeping the streets merchants informed.
Its got to be done, so lets just get it done, Easley said. Its just unfortunate since, in this case, its the help that suffers.
The second phase of the North Olympic Avenue Reconstruction Project will eventually replace the sidewalks, streets and utilities on six blocks of North Olympic Avenue, from Maple to Division streets, including small segments of First through Fifth streets, at a cost of $4.1 million. The cost of the first phase of the project, to remove underground storage tanks, was $340,000.
Ellis elaborated that construction on the gazebo in Legion Park was nearing completion, with work from Allen Roofing and Lone B Construction, the latter of which completed the framing and installed an eagle weather vane July 19.
Its been going really well, said Ellis, who expects the gazebo will also be finished Aug. 3. The gazebo has been a success of volunteer organization. Weve received materials and labor through donations and reduced rates, and were interested in continuing that momentum with other volunteer park projects.
One issue thats proceeding more slowly is the Hogan building.
Our agreement with Richard Hogan expired at the end of last year, Ellis said. Renegotiation is still an option, but we have to identify our other options. Id look for a decision on that in 2008. We havent ruled anything out, including a new agreement, but because were a public entity, we have to go through the process of looking at everything thats out there.
The Hogan building on Third Street, directly north of the police station, has been proposed to house the city of Arlingtons future permit center.
City of Arlington Assistant Director of Community Development Bill Blake had previously explained that the Hogan buildings first floor could serve as a customer service area, complete with a waiting lobby, counters for quick business and conference tables for longer meetings.
Were currently using the City Council chambers and the police station rooms for those meetings, Blake said. Wed also be able to have a computer in the lobby for online filing.
Blake envisioned the upper floor as an area for behind-the-scenes technical work, such as engineering and plan reviews.
Gregory Minaker, of Minaker Architecture in Arlington, designed the remodel for the Hogan building as the permit center.

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