April 4, 2013 | Volume 43, No. 13

Intersection rebuild to start soon

Front Street will be closed for road improvements from the boat harbor to the intersection with Beach Road for nearly six weeks beginning April 20, a state Department of Transportation official said this week.

The construction involves the combination of two projects totaling $3.9 million: improvements to the intersection at Front Street and Beach Road and the addition of sidewalks along Beach Road, said Keith Karpstein, DOT’s engineering manager for Southeast.

Instead of the “Y” intersection that exists now, the new intersection will be realigned to create a traditional four-way intersection between Front Street, Beach Road and Mud Bay Road. It will be a two-way stop, with stop signs on Front Street and Mud Bay Road.

“It’s a safer intersection and allows vehicles to make that right turn coming off of Front Street... The way it is tied in now is extremely difficult, especially with vehicles that might be pulling boats,” Karpstein said.

The project will extend sidewalks from the intersection along both sides of the Old Haines Highway to highway’s intersection at Third Avenue. A sidewalk will also be constructed on the uphill side of Beach Road from the intersection to Soap Suds Alley.

Haines Borough public facilities director Carlos Jimenez said Southeast Roadbuilders is in charge of construction. The borough entered into an agreement with Southeast Roadbuilders to provide signage and temporary walkways for pedestrians during the construction, Jimenez said.

Front Street is scheduled to reopen June 30.