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Sturbridge makes effort to help shops during Rte 131 work



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A signboard outside the Sturbridge Public Safety Complex alerts motorists to the fact that all shops along Route 131 will remain open while work continues on that stretch of road. Christopher Tanguay. (click for larger version)
May 03, 2010
With warm weather, so to comes road construction, and inevitably, traffic jams.

For the last week, an illuminated sign board outside the Sturbridge Public Safety Complex has been flashing the message that shops along Route 131 will remain open during roadwork, but so far, motorists have not been stuck in the long lines that accumulated along that road last summer when new water pipes were installed along side the roadway.

As part of the state Department of Transportation's plan to re-pitch the surface of 131 and add 6-foot sidewalks on either side, the current surface of the road must be milled and have a base coat of pavement laid down. The surface of the road must be as smooth and contiguous as possible in order for later phases of the project to be completed successfully.

"Essentially it makes the project for 131 — the redoing of 131 — a lot less expensive," said Chairman of the Board of Selectmen Ted Goodwin.

On Monday, April 26, Town Administrator Shaun Suhoski met with DPW Director Greg Morse, Police Chief Thomas Ford and a DOT project manager to discuss the details of the work that will be carried out this summer.

"It is expected that milling and base course paving from Route 20 through the traffic lights at Sturbridge Plaza will be completed this season with the balance of work to the Southbridge town line completed in the next construction season," Suhoski said in a report to selectmen.

See Tuesday's Southbridge Evening News for complete coverage of community news.

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