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Meeting to focus on Hillrise Boulevard options after street torn up for months

March 26th, 2014 12:53 pm by Gary B. Gray

Meeting to focus on Hillrise Boulevard options after street torn up for months

A roughly 3,000-foot section of Hillrise, from the intersection of East Holston Avenue and Baxter Street to Woodland Avenue, has been a problem area for some time. (Ron Campbell/JohnsonCityPress)

A stretch of Hillrise Boulevard in Johnson City remains unfixed, and it now appears hopes of restoring the historic concrete surface is not an affordable option.

The City Commission and Public Works Department will hold a Gump Addition neighborhood meeting/workshop at 6 p.m. Thursday at Memorial Park Community Center, 510 Bert St., to discuss improvements to Hillrise Boulevard.

A roughly 3,000-foot section of Hillrise, from the intersection of East Holston Avenue and Baxter Street to Woodland Avenue, has been a problem area for some time. The city’s Public Works Department began dealing with the ever-present potholes in late summer.

“It’s been torn up for a while,” said Phil Pindzola, Public Works director. “Asphalt had been laid on top of the old concrete, but it would ‘pop off’ every time it rained. We kept trying to patch it, but that didn’t seem to help. We then took the asphalt off and were hoping to bring back the old concrete street.”

Pindzola said by the time the city received information on its options, the weather turned cold, and it was too late to do any repairs.

“Ripping out the old concrete and replacing it would cost about $1 million,” he said. “We also had an expert flown in from Missouri. We looked at what it would cost to put in new concrete, and what it would cost to cut the concrete with diamond cutting, which would smooth it out. It has a lot of potholes, and it is rated as one of our worst streets. We were trying to keep the historic aspect of it, but we’ve been told paving looks like the best option.”

Pindzola said the workshop will be held to explain to members of the neighborhood what steps the city has taken, what it has learned and what options are available to maintain the historic integrity of the road and the neighborhood.

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