Salt Lake City has completed the Wilmington Avenue reconstruction project and BGR restaurant owner Meili Miles could not be happier. “A lot of people would not come because the road was so bad,” said Myles, who opened BGR with family members on Wilmington Avenue last December. “It really needed some work to be done and things are starting to pick up now.”
Today, Mayor Jackie Biskupski marked the completion of the project that stretches from 1300 East to Highland Drive in Sugar House. The City invested $550,000 in its share of state roadway funds for new concrete, upgraded traffic signs, curbs, gutters, sidewalks and pedestrian access ramps. An underground water line was also installed.
“Wilmington Avenue is in the heart of Sugar House and a vital artery for our residents and the businesses on this very unique street,” said Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “We appreciate everyone who helped suggest how to make the road better and those who made these impressive improvements.”
Since February, construction crews worked tirelessly to deliver a high-quality project as soon as possible. The reconstruction was completed on time and on budget.
“We wanted people to feel like we took care of every detail once we were done with the project,” said Matthew Cassel, City engineer. “We also installed colored crosswalks to increase visibility and safety for pedestrians.”
More roads can be replaced and repaired if voters approve the “Funding Our Future” bond. The $87 million bond would cost homeowners less than five dollars a year. The money would be used to improve street conditions. The Salt Lake City Council recently approved a .05 cent sales tax increase that will also be used to improve roads, transit, affordable housing and public safety. A recent survey found that two-thirds of City roads are in poor or worse condition. About 20 percent of those roads need to be completely rebuilt.
“The longer you wait the worse these roads get and it becomes even more expensive to repair or replace them,” said Cassel. “Motorists, bikers and pedestrians deserve to have roads that are safe and sturdy.”
Amy Leininger opened “The Ruin” bar and restaurant in December 2015 on Wilmington Avenue. The road was so bad that her tire popped while she was traveling to her new business. She is grateful for the newly constructed street.
“There’s a weight lifted off of every business owner,” said Leininger. “It is definitely better. People walk down the street and it looks really nice. The road lends itself to the quality of businesses that are here. They can wine, dine and feel fine on Wilmington.”
Residents are encouraged to stop by and enjoy their experience while visiting Wilmington Avenue. “I’m sure people will notice a huge difference; they’ll feel it as soon as they arrive,” added Cassel.
Pictures of the construction and completed work on Wilmington Avenue can be found at http://goo.gl/3NX8Ah. More information about the bond can be found at http://fundingourfutureslc.com/bond/.