Craven Street Improvements
Crews prepare to overhaul a city street to keep traffic flowing into a new industrial site. Engineers plan to widen Craven Street between Haywood Road and the Craven Street Bridge.
They were scheduled to begin today but city engineers put the work on a rain delay. When the weather dries up, they'll start moving dirt to make big changes.
Ron Bradley lives less than 100-feet from Craven Street, across from the New Belgium Brewery site.
Ron Bradley, "it's a little hard to see when you're pulling out right there now, so I think somebody told me they were going to widen that and make it a little easier now to pull out."
Bradley says the city's plans to widen Craven Street will make his daily drive safer and improve his neighborhood in west Asheville, "I think it will be more room, there's a lot of traffic on these little streets and it will be more room for the traffic, and more room for the trucks going through."
McCray Coates, "we're going to make the improvements all along the craven street intersections."
Public works engineer McCray Coates says the plans include wider lanes and bike lanes. Crews will rip up the pavement between Haywood Road and the Craven Street Bridge. Just west of the bridge, the work will re-route Craven, Hazel Mill Road, and Emma Road to a new intersection.
McCray Coates, "what we're looking at here is having a low-impact parking area here under the Jeff Bowen Bridge, and the folks that will be able to use that are really area-wide here, it can be folks with the river arts district, along with folks visiting the New Belgium site itself."
The plans don't just address cars and trucks. Crews will also build a greenway and will restore an un-named creek that flows from Waynesville Avenue, across the New Belgium site and into the French Broad.
Coates, "it's really going to be part of the storm water management aspect there, so it's going to provide some flooding benefits, and also some water quality benefits through there."
Coates says most of the roadway work will happen in the next six months, so be prepared for alternate lane closures and full road blockages.
The project has a completion date of December, 2015.