The City of Syracuse Department of Engineering is seeking public input regarding the City’s East Colvin Street Paving Project. The project extends from South Salina Street east to Jamesville Avenue, a distance of 2,650 feet (0.5 mile). This project is the first of two projects planned by the City to improve the mobility and safety of vehicular, bicycle and pedestrian traffic along East Colvin Street from Salina Street east to the city line at Nottingham Road.
East Colvin Street is an east-west arterial street connecting Syracuse’s south and east sides. It provides access to Syracuse University’s South Campus student housing area, athletic complex and student/staff commuter parking lots. The street also provides crosstown access to Onondaga Community College on Onondaga Hill. An on-ramp to northbound I-81 from Colvin Street provides quick access from the Outer Comstock neighborhood to downtown.
The existing pavement on East Colvin Street consists of a concrete foundation course and a hot mix asphalt (HMA) wearing surface. Aging pavement and heavy traffic over time has caused the HMA pavement riding surface to wear and develop wheel path rutting. Longitudinal cracks have developed at deteriorated joints in the concrete foundation course. There are utility repair pavement cuts that have not been properly restored with full depth pavement. Sections of the existing granite curbing are misaligned or damaged or do not have proper reveal.
East Colvin Street has sidewalks along both sides of the street. Some sidewalk sections, particularly between South Salina Street and Garfield Avenue, are in generally good condition. Many sections of sidewalk between Garfield and Jamesville Avenues are in poor condition with misaligned or missing concrete slabs, or are at a grade that is too low to drain to the roadway. Many sidewalks directly abut the curbline, with no snow storage area. Many curb ramps do not meet current Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines.
The city has initiated this project to correct these deficiencies and provide a safe and maintainable transportation corridor.
The primary objectives of this project are to:
- Rehabilitate and preserve the pavement, including full depth repairs where needed.
- Replace sidewalks in poor condition and bring all curb ramps up to current ADA requirements.
- Replace or reset deficient curbing and reconstruct driveway aprons where needed.
- Provide needed repairs to existing drainage structures.
- Replace signal loops and upgrade deficient pedestrian signals.
- Provide adequate accommodation for bicyclists consistent with NYSDOT standards and the Syracuse Bicycle Plan 2040.
- Install street trees and other plantings to improve the appearance of the corridor.
The City is considering a “2R” type pavement rehabilitation for this project. This alternative consists of rehabilitating East Colvin Street by milling the existing pavement and installing a 3 1/2 thick asphalt paving overlay. Nominal lengths of intersecting side streets will also be resurfaced. Severely damaged areas of pavement will receive full depth repairs. Deteriorated sections of curbing will be replaced.
In accordance with the Syracuse Bicycle Plan 2040, the existing bike lanes will be maintained from Garfield Avenue east to Jamesville Avenue. Shared used lanes will be provided west of Garfield Avenue.
Pedestrian accommodations will be upgraded to meet current ADA standards. Deteriorated linear sidewalk sections, especially east of Garfield Avenue, will be replaced, with greater setback from the curb provided where right-of-way allows. Sidewalk curb ramps will be replaced to include new embedded detectable warning units. A new uncontrolled crosswalk will be provided at Dougal Avenue to provide continuity for the sidewalk on the south side of Colvin Street, and will include standard crosswalk markings and pedestrian crossing signs. Standard pedestrian crossing signs will be provided for the existing uncontrolled crosswalk at Jamesville Avenue at the east end of the project.
Deteriorated drainage structures will be cleaned and repaired or replaced as needed. Manhole and drainage structure rims will be adjusted to finished grade. Replacement pavement markings and signage will be installed. Additional street trees will be installed along with other plantings in the area near the railroad overpass to improve the appearance of the street.
Possible Intersection Modifications at Garfield Avenue and East Colvin Spur
The City is considering curb line adjustments at the Garfield Avenue and East Colvin Spur intersections to improve safety for bicyclists and motorists and eliminate excess pavement. The City invites public comment on these proposed changes.
Garfield Avenue Option
Under this option, the south curbline in front of Houses 240, 244 and 246 would be moved in from its present location to eliminate excess pavement area and better define the Colvin Street south intersection with Garfield Avenue. The bike line in this area would be located adjacent to the new curbline rather than marked with dashed lines across the existing wide intersection pavement. This modification would result in additional lawn area with trees in front of Houses 240, 244 and 246.
East Colvin Spur Option
Under this option, the East Colvin Street Spur between Benedict and Moore Avenues would be realigned to intersect the mainline East Colvin Street pavement at more of a right angle. The existing island would remain. Excess pavement area would be eliminated and turned into additional lawn area with trees in front of Houses 604 and 606 East Colvin Street and House 100 Moore Avenue. The relocated south curb line would tie into the existing curb line at the Moore Avenue intersection. The existing bike line would be located adjacent to the new curb line rather than marked with dashed lines across the existing wide intersection pavement. The existing sidewalk would remain in its present location.
Maintaining Access During Construction
Paving and other construction operations will occur during daylight hours. Two-way traffic will be maintained, except for occasional alternating single lane traffic with flagger control during some construction operations. Where a sidewalk is closed for reconstruction, pedestrians will be routed to the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street. Traffic access to businesses and residences will be maintained and efforts will be made to keep inconvenience to the public at a minimum.
There is no acquisition of property necessary for this project. All improvements will be constructed within the public highway right-of-way. Releases for repairing driveway and sidewalk connections to abutting properties will be requested from owners before the beginning of the construction.
The total project cost, including design engineering, construction and construction inspection/administration, is anticipated to be approximately $3,560,000. This project is 80% federally funded and 20% state and city funded.
ESTIMATED Project Dates
Design Approval: August 2021
Begin Construction: Mid 2022 or Spring 2023
Complete Construction: Fall 2022 or Late Summer 2023
Please provide any comments or questions on the project by June 25, 2021. Your comments will be addressed and included in the project design report.
Russell Houck, P.E.
Department of Engineering
City of Syracuse
233 East Washington Street, Room 401
Syracuse, NY 13202