A $1.6 million street rehabilitation project along Magnolia Street in Oakdale is coming down the home stretch.
And it’s good timing, as classes at Magnolia Elementary School – along with those on the rest of the campuses in the Oakdale Joint Unified School District – will resume for students on Thursday, Aug. 9.
“The project is a street rehabilitation project funded by Measure L, Water and Sewer Enterprise Funds,” explained Oakdale Public Services Director Jeff Gravel. “The project will replace the water main, sewer laterals, storm drain manholes and rehabilitate the street surface.”
Gravel added that the project was divided into two sections, one for the east side and one for the west.
“The east section is to be drivable before school starts on August 9. The west section will be drivable shortly thereafter,” Gravel explained.
This past week, crews from United Paving out of Hughson were on site in front of the elementary school, working to get the project completed.
“It’s a big inconvenience to the people,” said supervisor Monty Tomlinson of residents having to deal with road closures and torn up streets around the area over the summer. “Hopefully we can do a good job and make everybody happy.”
One resident on Lambuth was not, noting concerns about the partial digging up of that street and uneven patching as opposed to having the street totally resurfaced. Local resident Jerry Kline said the south side of Lambuth, which runs alongside the school, has been torn up during the project and put back together in patchwork fashion at best.
Gravel said unfortunately, a total repaving of Lambuth was not part of the overall project.
“Lambuth has a water main which is valved in Magnolia,” Gravel explained. “Because of this, a portion of the water main in Lambuth, starting at the valve in Magnolia would have needed to be removed and because we had more available water line improvement money available for water line upgrades, the City Council with our recommendation chose to replace all of the water main in Lambuth south of Magnolia and defer the full pavement surface improvements to a later time.”
The work will eventually be done, but not with the money allocated for the current project.
“The City Council’s priority is to first improve the street surfaces in front of schools and the hospital,” added Gravel. “We will be programing this section of Lambuth in our next Capital Improvement Program (CIP) update in the fall. At that time, this project may be funded by other funding sources such as Gas Tax, SB1 or later with Measure L which are all street surface rehab/maintenance oriented funding sources.”
So while some city streets are getting smoothed out as a side benefit of the water and sewer work, others will have to wait.
“I wish we could do more street improvement projects but of course we are limited to our available funding sources,” Gravel said.