NEW - - CONSTRUCTION UPDATE: 05/13)
Traffic was shifted in early April to the south side of Grant Road and the east side of Oracle Road to allow continued construction on the north side. Underground electric, storm drain and landscape items are currently being installed. The roadway is being graded and prepared for curbing, sidewalk and asphalt placement along Oracle Road by late May. Grant Road roadway preparation will continue into June.
Please use caution when traveling in the area. Watch for construction workers and equipment and obey all traffic controls.
This project provides for the widening of Grant Road to six lanes from 15th Avenue east to Castro Street, and median island right turn lane modifications along Oracle Road from Alturas Street south to Rillito Street. As part of the roadway widening, the intersection of Grant Road and Oracle Road will be reconstructed to provide indirect left intersection operations.
The work includes, but is not limited to, removals, construction of new asphaltic concrete and Portland cement concrete pavements, drainage improvements, furnishing and installing traffic signal equipment and electrical street lighting, raised medians, sidewalk, curb access ramps, driveways, signing and striping, utility relocations and modifications to the existing water and sewer systems, landscaping, and other related incidental work.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
During this phase the center median islands along Grant Road will be removed and replaced with temporary asphalt to allow traffic to be shifted to the north side of the project. Other miscellaneous curb, sidewalk and pavement work will take place to prepare the south side of Grant Road for reconstruction. The Grant / Oracle intersection traffic signal will be modified to maintain traffic circulation during construction. Pedestrian sidewalk and street lighting will be maintained along the north side of Grant Road during this phase. This phase will take approximately one month to complete.
Major water line reconstruction and storm drain modifications on the south side of Grant Road are scheduled during this phase. Other work during the second phase will include reconstruction of portions of the sanitary sewer system, storm drain manhole reconstruction, lighting and traffic signal conduit installation and ending with new roadbed and pavement installation. This phase will take approximately four months to complete.
The third phase will consist of constructing the north half of Grant Road including street lighting, traffic signal infra-structure, completing pedestrian crossing signals and installing curbing and pavement. This work will take approximately four months to complete.
Oracle Road reconstruction between Rillito and Alturas will take place during this phase. Work will include median island modifications, storm drain and sanitary sewer reconstruction and modifications. New pavement installation will also be part of this phase. This work will take approximately two months to complete.
The median islands along Grant Road, intersection traffic signals, landscaping, public art, final paving and miscellaneous items will be completed during this time. This work will take approximately two months.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
- When will the project begin and how long will it take?
- The construction is now scheduled to begin July 16, 2012. Work will take approximately twelve months to complete (weather permitting).
Q. What are some of the design features being incorporated in the construction?
A. The scope of work for the Grant Road/Oracle Road Intersection construction is to widen the existing road cross section by incorporating the new indirect left turn design. New eight-foot wide side sidewalks will be constructed within the limits of the project. New concrete curbing separating the left turn lanes from the thru traffic along Oracle Road will be a part of this project. New bus pullouts will be constructed at the northwest and southeast corners including enhanced shelters. The existing traffic signals will be relocated requiring the entire intersection to be re-wired and upgraded. Modifications are planned to the existing storm drains and new catch basins will be constructed in the new curb line created by the widening. The existing pavement within the construction limits will be replaced with new asphalt paving. Water main replacement and modifications are also expected as part of this contract. Other aesthetic features include new decorative concrete and pedestrian lighting in the intersection area.
Q. Both Grant Road and Oracle Road carry a lot of commuter traffic. Should we expect delays on account of construction?
A. Much of the work is anticipated to be done outside of the travel area with minimal lane restrictions during off peak hours (9:00 AM to 3:00 PM). Some of the work will be done at night to minimize the inconvenience to commuters, and businesses. Expect some inconvenience where the pavement is removed in traffic circulation areas such as driveways. Drivers will be required to travel over earthen or uneven, temporary paved surfaces until such time that the new pavement is in place. The final paving will most likely be done at night.
- Will the overhead power lines be removed as part of this project?
- Relocating the overhead power lines to underground is not part of the scope of this project. It will be too costly to consider. Tucson Electric Power (TEP) and other utilities have relocated portions of their systems to make way for our construction project.
Q. How will we know what is going on during construction?
- We will communicate mostly with press releases, message boards, and though our business consultant – RTA Main Street Business Consultants. Please contact Tom Weideman, Tucson DOT Engineering Project Manager, at 520-837-6617 for more information or if there are concerns during construction.
- Traffic backs up now and cars sometimes cut through our neighborhood. How can this be prevented?
- There is a backup during peak hours now and our construction sequencing should not make it much worse. We will monitor the project during construction and determine if this becomes a problem. Should there be a considerable number of cars cutting through the neighborhood, we will add barricades with signs indicating the road is closed to through traffic (Local Traffic Only). Despite these actions, there is no guarantee that this will prevent cars from using your streets to try to avoid the backup.
- Will business access be provided at all times during construction?
- Driveways will be reconstructed as part of this project. Where single driveway access exists only, we will rebuild the driveway apron half at a time to maintain access. If more than one driveway is available, we will close one driveway and allow access through the second driveway. By concentrating on reconstructing driveways at one time, we can reduce the restrictions and reduce the inconvenience to your patrons. Regardless of which scenario is followed, we will communicate with you the options and allow you to be involved in the decision. Business access signs will be posted alerting drivers as to where all driveways exist during construction.
- How will pedestrian access be provided during construction?
- We hope to keep the existing sidewalks in place where possible while we build the new sidewalks. This will not work at every corner, so we hope to direct pedestrian traffic as safely as possible through the construction limits. Look for existing bus stops to be relocated to safer locations when needed.
- Will the signal timing be adjusted to allow pedestrians to cross the widened intersection?
- The signal timing is based upon the volume of traffic that uses the intersection at various times of the day. When a pedestrian pushes the button, the timing is interrupted and enough time is given to allow the pedestrian to cross safely. The amount of time needed to cross the intersection will be adjusted as necessary.
Q. Will the pedestrian signal at 15th Street still be useable?
- The pedestrian signal at 15th Street will be de-energized during most of the construction operations. Pedestrians will be redirected to the west side of the 15th Street / Grant Road intersection to cross Grant Road.
Q. Water modifications were mentioned as part of the scope of work. Will we ever be out of water and for how long?
- Water modifications will be made as part of this project. All existing water services will be active until such time that the new service connections and modifications are made permanent. This will take a few hours to make this new connection. Customers will be advised 48 hours in advance and this work will typically be done at night during the early morning hours while everyone is asleep. For businesses that are open 24 hours a day, we can provide temporary water during this time. This will be coordinated with businesses as needed.
- You mentioned work will be done at night. How will I be able to sleep?
- Only occasional work will be done at night and it will be done over a few days. Most of the work will be done during the day. The construction limits are primarily in front of commercial frontage. We realize there are neighborhoods beyond these commercial properties and hope the properties can act as a buffer. We will place message boards advising of the night work in advance. I apologize for the inconvenience and ask for your cooperation and understanding during this time.
Q. What segment of the Grant Road Corridor is this project?
A. The overall Grant Road Corridor is phased into six segments. This segment is the first phase beginning at 15th Street and continuing east to Castro Street. The second phase or section will continue from Castro going east and terminating east of Park Avenue at Fremont Street. Design funding has been approved by the RTA board for the second phase and a design consultant should be selected this summer. Click on the Reconstruction Phase Map for more information.
Q. Who would I talk to about impacts to my property?
A. If you think your property may be impacted in a later planning phase you would want to contact Mike Holder, Planning Manager of the overall corridor project, at 837-6723. If your property is located within the active construction zone or current design phase you would want to contact the design/construction project manager, Tom Weideman at 837-6617.