PHASE I COMPLETE – JULY 1 – 26

It just came to our attention that this post from 7/8 did not post to the website. Our apologies for the delay of information sharing. The first phase of the Commons Project finished the first week of July, about 10 days ahead of schedule. Phase I involved the demolition and removal of the above ground structures. This work sets the stage for Phase II, which involves replacing and upgrading the underground utilities. The Phase II contract time frame is 7/29/2013 – 11/27/2013.

There will be a 3 week period where there will be no construction on the Commons. The Downtown Ithaca Alliance will be priming the inside of the wooden construction fence / mural project during this time. Priming the inside of the panels will extend the life span of the wooden construction fence.
inside panels painted 004

A key component of the second phase, and one of the major reasons driving this project, is replacement of the 100+year old water main. The current water main leaks at many of the joints. When the main is replaced, building owners will have the opportunity to upgrade their water service lines to support an automatic sprinkler system.

Another major benefit of this project, but one that will have to wait until Phase III is complete, is to create an even and safe surface to walk on. After four decades of localized underground repairs over the years, it has created a walking surface that is uneven and is a tripping hazard for the thousands of pedestrians that visit the Commons. In 2014, after the underground work is complete, the surface of the Commons will be completely redone.

The Project Team will be working with property owners over the next few weeks to assist them with utility and telecommunication upgrades they may need or want during Phase II.

If you want to receive notifications of new construction updates by email when they happen, click Follow on the bottom of the left column on http://www.ithacacommons.info.

Enjoy the break, and please let us know if you have any questions.

WEEK OF JUNE 24-27

The asphalt paving and surface demolition is now complete. The part of the construction fence that zigs and zags will continue to be moved in to align with the rest of the fence.

More street lights will be installed and the lights will be reorganized to allow for more even spacing and consistent light levels.

Construction gates will continue to be installed at each of the pedestrian crossings and at each entrance to the construction site. After the gates are installed the orange fence will be replaced with the wooden construction fence. The gates are installed to allow construction vehicles to move through the site.

WEEK OF JUNE 17-20

Early next week, weather permitting; the three north-south pedestrian crossings will be paved with asphalt. One is located between Benjamin Peters and Race Office Supply; one between Body Gear and Jillian’s Drawers and one between the Outdoor Store and Home Green Home. The east-west crossing near bank alley will also be paved.

ped crossings 004  ped crossings 002 6 007

The wooden construction fence zigs and zags because it was built around the concrete planters. Now that the planters have been removed, the bump outs will be moved in to align with the rest of the construction fence. Asphalt will be first placed to create a base to secure the fence.

zig zag fence 002

The asphalt may generate petrochemical odors, similar to when it is put down on driveways, parking lots or roadways.

Construction gates have been installed at the Cayuga and Aurora Street entrances. A gate will be also installed at the Tioga Street entrance as well as at the pedestrian crossings which will allow construction vehicles to move through the site.

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The demolition and removal of the concrete planters on Bank Alley will continue through the week. The excavators used for the demolition can be loud, and you may feel some vibrations in your building. Please contact us if you have any concerns.

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The street lights on the Commons will be reorganized to allow for more even spacing and consistent light levels.

Please be aware that because it is a construction site, at any time pedestrians may need to be rerouted to one side of the Commons or asked to wait while construction vehicle(s) move through a pedestrian crossing. These disruptions will be temporary and should only last a few minutes. We thank you for your patience and cooperation during this important work.

If you want to receive notifications of new construction updates by email when they happen, click Follow on the bottom of the left column on www.ithacacommons.info

Asphalt Update – June 12th & 13th

The demolition and removal of the concrete planters has started on Bank Alley and will continue through next week. The excavators being used for the demolition can be loud, and you may feel some vibrations in your building. Please contact us if you have any concerns.

On Wednesday, 6/12 and Thursday, 6/13, weather permitting, the two north-south pedestrian crossings will be paved with asphalt. One is located between Benjamin Peters and Race Office Supply and the other one between Body Gear and Jillian’s Drawers. The asphalt will generate petrochemical odors, similar to when it is put down on driveways, parking lots or roadways.

The construction fence that juts out on the south side in front of Center Ithaca will be moved in to be aligned with the rest of the construction fence.  Asphalt will be first placed to create a base to secure the fence.

Please be aware that because it is a construction site, at any time pedestrians may be rerouted to one side of the Commons or asked to wait while construction vehicle(s) move through a pedestrian crossing.  These disruptions will be temporary and should only last a few minutes.  We thank you for your patience and cooperation during this important work.

WEEK OF JUNE 10-13

The week of June 10th will be similar to last week.  The work on the east end will continue with the demolition and removal of the concrete planters, and then shift to bank alley. The excavators and jack hammers being used for the demolition can be loud, and you may feel some vibrations in your building. Please contact us if you have any concerns.

At some point in the next couple weeks, two new north-south pedestrian crossings will replace the current crossings. One will be located between Benjamin Peters and Race Office Supply and the other will be between Body Gear and Jillian’s Drawers. The crossings are being prepared to be paved with asphalt.  A notice will be posted on this site before the asphalt work starts.

Also in the next couple of weeks, the street lights on the Commons are going to be reorganized to allow for more even spacing and consistent light levels. Construction gates will be installed at the pedestrian crossings and at each entrance to allow construction vehicles to move through the site.

Please be aware that because it is a construction site, at any time pedestrians may be rerouted to one side of the Commons or asked to wait while construction vehicle(s) move through a pedestrian crossing.  These disruptions will be temporary and should only last a few minutes.  We thank you for your patience and cooperation during this important work.

If you want to receive notifications of new construction updates by email when they happen, click Follow on left column on  www.ithacacommons.info.

IMPORTANT WATER UPDATE

This afternoon one of the water pipes got damaged by the construction equipment.  The City is working with the contractors and the Project Manager to repair the small leak. The process will involve shutting off the main water valve. Once shut off, there will be no water available for merchants and residents on the Commons. The estimated time, once the main water valve is shut off, should be about a hour.

An update will be posted once the leak is fixed. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please call the Project Outreach Coordinator, Tammy Baker at 220-8425 or Project Manager, Michael Kuo at 342-4235.

Week of June 3 – 6

Most of the work on the west end is complete. Next week, two new north-south pedestrian crossings will replace the current crossings. One will be located between Benjamin Peters and Race Office Supply and the other will be between Body Gear and Jillian’s Drawers. The crossings will be paved in asphalt.Construction gates will be installed at the crossings and the Cayuga Street entrance to allow construction vehicles to move through the site.

The work on the east end did not start last week, as was previously intended, but this was done so that the contractors could focus on completing the west end before the start of the Ithaca Festival. The work on the east end will begin next week with the demolition and removal of the concrete planters and pavilions and benches will start on the east end, and then shift to bank alley. The excavators and jack hammers being used for the demolition can be loud, and you may feel some vibrations in your building. Please contact us if you have any concerns. We are doing as much as we can to minimize the disruption.

Most of the bricks from the former Trolley Circle were salvaged along with all of the granite curbs that framed the circle. The granite curbs bore the names of significant landmarks across the region and are planned to be reinstalled at another public location. There will be a new Trolley Circle, in the same location with different material used in the design.

In the next couple of weeks, the street lights on the Commons are going to be reorganized to allow for more even spacing and consistent light levels.

Please be aware that because it is a construction site, at any time pedestrians may be rerouted to one side of the Commons or asked to wait while construction vehicle(s) move through a pedestrian crossing.  These disruptions will be temporary and should only last a few minutes.  We thank you for your patience and cooperation during this important work.

Week of May 27-30

This week the playground was removed, with a majority of its components donated to Finger Lakes Reuse.

Playground down 001   east end fence 001

The Planet Walk Sun Sculpture was moved into storage until next year.

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The construction fence around the perimeter of the work area is now almost complete.  Chain link gates will soon replace the temporary orange fencing at each entrance.

Pedestrian access is available to all businesses on the Commons. There are both east-west and north-south crossings throughout the site. Please be aware that because it is a construction site, at any time pedestrians may be rerouted to one side of the Commons or asked to wait while a construction vehicle moves through a pedestrian crossing.

The week of May 27th,  the demolition and removal of the concrete planters and pavilions and benches will start on the east end. The demolition will continue toward the center of the Commons and then shift to bank alley. The excavators and jack hammers being used for the demolition can be loud, and you may feel some vibrations in your building. Please contact us if you have any concerns. We are doing as much as we can to minimize the disruption.

Because of the Memorial Day holiday, the work schedule for next week is Tuesday – Thursday, 7:30AM – 6:00PM.

If you want to receive notifications of new construction updates by email, visit www.ithacacommons.info and click Follow on left column.

Week of May 20 -23

The Commons playground will be available for one more weekend. Please bring your kids downtown for one more ride down the slide! The play structure will be demolished and removed early next week.

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By the end of next week the construction fence will be completely installed around the work area. Demolition and removal of the concrete planters, pavilions and benches will begin on the east end, and then continue on Bank Alley.

The removal of the trolley circle has started, but the granite pavers that bear the names of Ithaca destinations around the outside of the trolley tracks will be saved and incorporated into the new design. (Quiz: How many different Ithaca locations were written on the granite pavers?)

5 17 005   slide 003

Thursday was quite windy, and every now and again a gust of wind would stir up a little dust storm. It is our plan to control the dust as much as possible during the demolition. The contractors are watering down the demolition area as they work to help prevent dust from being airborne.

Painting of the mural project has started. Please come and visit the artists at work over the next couple of weeks.

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 If you want to receive notifications of new construction updates by email, visit www.ithacacommons.info and click Follow on left column.