RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Some changes are on the way to the roads in Richmond - a big repaving project gets underway Wednesday.
The first roads to get the repavement treatment is Cumerbland Street and Parkwood Avenue. But this is just the beginning of a major five year plan to help deteriorating city roads. Between now and the end of October, about 100 lane lines of city roads will be repaved.
On Wednesday, crews are grinding away at the pothole filled Cumberland Street and, the work is grinding traffic down to a halt at times.
"I think it's going to be interesting to say the least! It's hard enough to find parking down here and this is a major road to the highway, so during rush hour is going to be a little tough," says driver Samantha Severson.
On day 1, Samantha, just trying to get to her summer class, is already having a major problem parking. "What should have taken 5 minutes took 20."
"It's good but it sucks for parking!," adds driver Nicole.
During the work, add some time to find a spot because it's going to be harder than usual. You won't be able to park on the roads under construction and the city say they may enforce towing if you refuse to move!
"The more people adhere to those signs and pay attention to the quicker we can get in and get out and let everyone get back to their normal business and normal parking," says Sharon North with the Dept. of Public Works.
You may find a lane closed from time to time. But despite that, Samantha agrees, in the end, the hassle is worth it down the line.
Over the next five years crews will repave 25% of the neighborhood and city streets.
Between now and the middle of July, parts of Cumberland, Parkwood, Monument and Belvidere will see brand new pavement.
"It is really bumpy. Monument, we bike on. So even when your biking on the road, you hit every bump and it's difficult. It's not an enjoyable ride," adds Severson.
But soon those big old bumps will be a thing of the past.
Here are the scheduled dates of work right now through mid-July:
-Parkwood and Cumberland between Belvidere and Meadow, starting June 9th through June 18th.
-Monument between Thompson and the Boulevard from June 14th through June 25th.
-Belvidere between the Robert E. Lee Bridge and I-95 from June 21st through July 9th.
One the repaving is done, the road markers will be placed onto the newly paved roads. Then, between now and the end of October, crews will begin to repave roads in the city neighborhoods as well.
For a complete schedule of this year's $6 million project, click on this link: http://www.richmondgov.com/PublicWorks/documents/calendar2010_Paving.pdf
Of course, all of the work and the completion dates depends on the weather.