Work has begun to raise up a section of Pumpkin Harbor Road in Cambridge, which floods nearly every year when the Lamoille River spills its banks near the wrong-way bridge on Route 15.
The road surface is being raised up anywhere from 6 inches to 3 feet, depending on the section, to keep it above water during all but the most severe floods, so that police, firefighters and ambulances can get to Bartlett Hill Road.
On Monday, the Cambridge highway crew began clearing brush alongside the road and doing other preliminary work. Beginning next week, July 15-19, the road will be sporadically closed to all traffic on certain days. One lane of alternating one-way traffic will be maintained on the days the road is still open.
“We’re trying to keep it open as much as we can,” Cambridge Road Foreman Bill Morey said Tuesday. The sporadic daily closures of the road will occur only between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday when needed.
The road closures will be needed to replace several culverts along six-tenths of a mile, rebuild the current roadbed, build the road up to its new higher level, and then pave it.
The Cambridge highway crew will handle much of the early work; Pike Industries will be rebuild the road, build it up and pave it.
The goal is to have the entire project wrapped up by Oct. 1, Morey said.
“It’s going to take a while,” he said.
Drivers are encouraged to seek alternate routes during the work, even when the road is open. The town has mapped out a detour for drivers traveling to or from Fletcher; it includes Route 108 North, Pollander Road, North Cambridge Road, Rushford Road and Cambridge Road.
Here’s a rundown on other highway construction in Lamoille County.
• Repaving of Route 15 in Morristown and Wolcott could begin as early as next week. Workers have been installing signs this week, and patching of all major potholes could start on Monday, July 15, says Jeff Cota, project manager for the Vermont Agency of Transportation. Once the potholes are patched, effectively sealing off further water damage, up to two inches of new pavement will be applied.
Similar work on Route 14 in Craftsbury will be done later this summer, Cota said, probably after the Route 15 project wraps up.
During both projects, drivers can expect delays and one lane of alternating, one-way traffic.
• Several town roads in Hyde Park were closed to through traffic this week during daytime hours while workers replaced culverts. East Main Street was closed on Tuesday near 407 East Main, and on Wednesday just east of Centerville Road.
The final two road closures were scheduled for today, Thursday, July 11. Jones Road will be closed just south of with Mourning Dove Lane and McKinstry Hill Road will be closed near the address 2471 McKinstry Hill Road.
The road closures are all subject to change; for more information, call Hyde Park Town Administrator Ron Rodjenski at 888-2300, ext. 2.