By GAIL OBER, LACONIA DAILY SUN
BELMONT — It's going to be a while before there's free-flowing traffic along Route 106 as there are several ongoing road projects and construction can last until snow falls.
According to project engineers and a media representative of the state Department of Transportation, there are two projects happening in the Route 106 corridor simultaneously.
The first is a $7.2 million major road construction project schedule for completion in the autumn of 2017, in which the Route 106 from Dutile Road to South Main Street in Laconia is being redone. Some paving along this stretch will begin Saturday morning.
Project manager Chuck Flanders said that section will have a complete reclaiming and resurfacing, meaning the existing pavement is "chewed up," mixed with new road materials, regraded and paved.
He described this as a long-term fix which means the reconstruction should last for at least 20 to 25 years except for seasonal repairs and some possible top coat work in the future.
From Dutile Road south to Farraville Road, the state is cold planing or removing and replacing 1 ½ inches of asphalt in the travel lanes only.
Additionally, this project includes repaving the bridge deck of the Laconia Bypass that goes over Route 106. Flanders said that part of the complete repaving of the bypass was carved out so one crew could handle all of the traffic needs for that one area.
This project also included the redesign and reconstruction of the intersection of Seavey Road and Route 106, which was identified in the past five years as one of the more dangerous intersections in the state making it eligible for some federally subsidized grants.
Flanders said the only part of that construction project happening this year is done and that was to widen the area along Route 106 and install new utility poles. He said Eversource will coordinate relocating the lines and the actual construction will begin in spring of 2017.
Flanders said road crews are opening traffic to two lanes during peak commuter times in the morning and in the afternoon, but for the rest of the day, motorists can expect traffic to move along one lane only. He said the maximum wait is usually about three or four minutes, which he agreed seems like forever when one has to get someplace.
"We think traffic is moving pretty well through there, considering the scope of the project," he said, urging people who travel along Route 106 to give themselves some extra time to get to their destination.
Another project is the repaving of the entire bypass, much of which has been completed.
Additionally, there is the replacement of the Laconia Bypass deck that runs over Route 11A in Gilford.
DOT media spokesman Bill Boynton said that project was supposed to be finished on Aug. 5 but crews ran into some problems when the preformed concrete plates didn't fit exactly as the engineers had planned. He said there are times when traffic is rerouted around the overpass but said they expect that part of the bypass to be finished this fall.
Route 106 in Belmont has been stripped to the bare dirt along a long stretch just south of Laconia. Work on the road will continue through next year. (Ginger Kozlowski/Laconia Daily Sun)
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