Large road-grinding machines moved onto Hill streets Monday, preparing the roads for partial repaving following the placement of new gas lines a year ago. It’s a noisy mess, but a foreman said it should be done in about three weeks.
The work, being down by J.H. Lynch Contractors, is being paid for by National Grid, as a finish for the gas line work they undertook in summer 2013. At that time, contractors dug an 18-inch trench and swapped out the old gas line for a new one – something National Grid has been doing in several communities across the state.
That trench was then filled in, patched and left to settle before this more permanent paving was done.
“We require that they wait at least a good winter on those trenches,” said town Public Works Director Joe Duarte Wednesday. “Let the trenches settle.”
As to why only part of the street is getting repaved when, in many locations, the whole street could use it, Duarte said that’s something that’s worked out with National Grid.
“We require them to restore the road,” he said. “If it’s a brand-new road, we’re going to make them do the whole entire road or at least half.”
But if it’s an older road – as the streets involved generally are – ”I can’t make them build the whole road.”
So, instead, National Grid is paving a 7-foot-wide strip.
“They’re a mess,” said Duarte of the roads. “They need to be redone anyway. That’s why I’m asking for that $2 million road bond.”
He was referring to the question on the Nov. 4 ballot seeking approval to borrow up to $2 million to repair roads throughout the town.
The road is “milled” or ground, first. Then the paving begins, which is quicker than the grinding, said Duarte. He said the town was expecting the construction to begin later this month, but they arrived on Monday and that’s ok with Duarte.
“As far as I’m concerned, get in here, get it done and move on,” he said.