LACONIA — City Manager Scott Myers told the City Council this week that plans are underway to reconstruct Lakeside Avenue, replace a water main, upgrade a sewer line, improve the drainage system and perhaps bury the utility lines at The Weirs in time for the running of Motorcycle Week in 2017.
Paul Moynihan, director of Public Works, included the project in his submission to the Capital Improvement Program Committee and Seth Nuttelman, superintendent of the Laconia Water Works placed the water main along Lakeside Avenue between U.S. Route 3 and Tower Street atop the list of capital improvements for 2016-2017.
Meters projected the cost of reconstructing Lakeside Avenue and improving the drainage at $1 million. The upgrade to the sewer, estimated to cost $90,000, would be born by ratepayers. The cost of replacing the water main, estimated at $500,000, would be funded through the enterprise fund of the Laconia Water Works.
Myers said that, depending on the scope of the project, work could begin following Labor Day and continue into November, then resume in the spring of 2017 and be finished by Memorial Day.
Myers said he has approached Eversource about the cost of burying the utility lines. He said that the city is authorized to borrow to finance the project and suggested drawing on the general fund to defray the debt service then applying revenue from the Weirs Tax Increment Financing District to replenish the general fund.
Myers noted that replacing about 360 feet of wooden decking at the north end of the boardwalk at The Weirs, another priority of the Department of Public Works, might be incorporated in the project. Moynihan described the condition of that stretch of the boardwalk as "fair" to "poor," noting that it was last rebuilt in 1987. He suggested composite or synthetic material might be used to replace the wooden deck and estimated the cost of the project at $495,000.
Myers also mentioned the last unpaved "cat alley" at The Weirs — Margin Avenue, which runs for approximately 100 yards between the railroad track and Centenary Avenue north of the bridge carrying Foster Avenue over the railway and intersects Centenary Avenue at both ends. Apart from its unpaved surface, Margin Avenue suffers for lack of drainage.
This year, 5.67 miles of city streets and roads were paved and improved, including to the surprise of the councilors 1,430 feet of Court Street. The council has expected Court Street, from the intersection with Main Street to the Belmont town line.to be reclaimed and overlaid as well as the sewer and drainage improved, next year at a cost of $1.3 million. However, Myers said that with the ambitious plans for 2016 and 2017, the decision was made to pave the stretch of Court Street, which would "buy us another two or three years" before reconstructing the street in 2018.