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Upper Kirby Construction Update
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Upper Kirby Update 

March 23, 2012  

Buffalo Speedway Improvements   
Lanes to Open up Next Week     
Paving Activity Continues
Buffalo Speedway Construction

Pavement work on Buffalo Speedway is now nearly complete and, weather permitting, the contractor expects to restore the roadway lanes to their pre-construction capacity next week.

This past week, crews successfully completed pouring the Bissonnet intersection and anticipate brick work on the crosswalks to take place next week. Also over the coming week will be the final remaining pavement at two driveways on the west side of the roadway and the left-turn bays down the center of the median. If all goes as planned, two lanes in either direction and center turn bays will be opened to motorists Wednesday or Thursday

Crews will continue work installing pedestrian lighting, landscaping and sidewalks behind the curb on into April, opening up the new roadway capacity as the streetscape is completed.  
Richmond Drainage Construction Area  

Richmond Avenue Construction 

A final design for the revised traffic control plan is awaiting City approval. It is likely that construction on the Richmond Avenue Drainage improvements project between Kirby and Buffalo Speedway will begin at the end of the end of the month.   
Look for an update containing the specific start date next week.

The original plan called for work to be
completed in phases (Kirby to Wakeforest and Wakeforest to Buffalo Speedway), opening up the roadway as construction is completed and implementing traffic control as activity moves west along the street. It called for traffic to be moved exclusively to the south side of the esplanades with one lane eastbound, one lane westbound and a center turn lane.

The new plan will reduce the construction area on the north side of the esplanade allowing for two eastbound lanes and two westbound lanes at all times including the northernmost curbside lane westbound. This will allow for much easier access to business entrances and side streets on the north side of Richmond. Work will still move in sections and traffic will be restored as construction is completed.

The new plan will be drawn up for final approval over the next several days. It is likely that construction will not be ready to begin until the week after next.

While this alteration of the traffic plan will increase vehicular capacity during construction and improve access to the north side of Richmond, it will restrict the space in which the contractor has to install the new storm facilities and make applicable connections. This will mean that the original contract period of 270 calendar days will likely increase by 30 days or more.

The Richmond Storm Drainage Improvement Project is one of two remaining large lateral drainage lines that empties into the newly improved Kirby Drive storm system. Work on this project will entail the installation of a 72" storm line along the north side of Richmond Avenue from Kirby to Buffalo Speedway. New lateral lines will also be constructed on Eastside and Audley along with new inlets and inlet leads.

As schedules for Metro's proposed University Line light rail installation along this section of roadway are still uncertain and light rail construction would necessitate the reconstruction of the roadway, the pavement will not be reconstructed as part of this project. Contractors will excavate what is necessary to improve the drainage system on the north side of the street and will restore that area once complete. The esplanades and back of curb areas will not be impacted within the scope of this project.

For more information on Upper Kirby construction projects and for issues and concerns as construction progresses, contact Travis Younkin at 713.524.8000 or email travis@upperkirby.org.

If you have a new business, development or community event that you would like included in the monthly Upper Kirby news, please contact us at 713.524.8000 or submit to streettalk@upperkirby.org
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Upper Kirby is a constantly evolving urban area marked by an outstanding location, great shopping, unique residential neighborhoods, smart development and a small town feel. It is an area of successful businesses, involved communities and a synergy between the public and private sectors. It is the heartbeat of Houston and everywhere you want to be.