Knoxville — As we reported on our Facebook page yesterday, Robinson Street is expected to open today (Tuesday, June 3) but the intersection of Second and Robinson will close again in the future for some grinding work.
The crosswalk on Robinson is expected to be completed today and the street should open late this afternoon. Original plans were to open Robinson and begin to shut down Third and Main today.
However, the starting time for the Third Street portion of the project is now undetermined. Assistant City Manager Dylan Feik wants to be consistent in the City's pledge to never have more than one intersection closed downtown during construction. The Third and Main closure will not begin until all of the work on Second and Robinson intersection is complete.
The piece of equipment used to grind the pavement has required some maintenance. The equipment is expected to be available in a week, if not sooner. When this piece of equipment is functional again, the intersection of Second and Robinson will be closed to install pavers, which will complete the intersection.
Installation of lights along Robinson can be done with single lane closures. This part of the project is approaching.
The Second Street portion of the project still needs to be sealed. Bricks need to be placed on both sides of the street as well.
The Knoxville Farmers' Market has interfered with the speed at which the grinding work could have been done. One of the contractors mentioned lost time on Saturday and Tuesday afternoons, due to the market. Feik said the City offered the market other locations, but organizers were adamant about remaining on the square.
Marion County Facilities Director Cal Stephens is concerned about the loss of the County's handicap parking spaces on Third Street. Those who need these spaces have been forced to park on the north side of the courthouse.
Stephens also reported that the contractors working on the courthouse clock tower project found more rusty girders than anticipated. The project is expected to take 15 days longer than originally planned. Stephens stressed the importance of continued access to the courthouse parking lot off of Third.