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Thursday, July 10

Fred-Med: night work helps accelerate work during the day

Construction work during any time of the day is difficult - and at times inconvenient - for anyone neighboring an active project. Daytime neighbors see delays in traffic flow and can deal with sun-dried dust. That's kicked up (though we try to use water trucks to keep the dust at a minimum). Overnight neighbors deal with noise and lights.

To all of our neighbors, we are sympathetic and understanding. We, like you, are residents of the area and taxpayers, and we get frustrated about the work as well.

This project is unique in that it sets withing a tight transition area between a commercial area and a residential area. We do our level best to minimize our nuisance, but we hear a few neighbors lament our work schedule. The good news is most of the work that's causing such angst should be done by the end of summer. In the meantime, here's why we do what we do:

Utility work - including storm drain work and moving water lines - is typically done at night in order to minimalize the impact of services to residents. We do what we can with excavation during the day, but when it comes to moving water lines, power lines, gas lines ... well, that's all best done at night. (In fact, we are planning one such interrtion the night if Monday, July 14, for the folks at Spyglass Hill. Their water should be back on by Tuesday morning's shower time.)

Road work is done around-the-clock on this project. It's also a six-days-per-week job, meaning we've got guys working on weekends. This was done to speed up the project. Think of it: we have guys working on the job 18-20 hours each day, six days each week. Our estimated project duration was just shy of 18 months when we got going. What if we only worked Monday through Friday, 8 to 5? Why, this project wouldn't be done until almost 2017!

We also have unique bridge support structures being built under Fredericksburg Road. They're under those huge steel plates folks drive over at the intersection....

Anyway, some of that work can be done during the day, but a lot of it is done at night so we can close roadway lanes. We can't do closures during the day for a slew of reasons, so that stuff - including the louder drill work - has to be done overnight.

While we're on the topic of night work (and weekend work), let's talk about a date to mark on your calendar: July 18. 

That Friday night, starting around 8 p.m., Texas Sterling will reduce traffic on Medical Drive at Ewing Halsell to a single lane each way while crews rebuild the roadway to match the eventual footprint in the area. Police will be on hand to ensure folks headed to hospital facilities for emergencies will be able to do so quickly. The closure will be opened back up to two lanes each way by Monday at 5 a.m.

The latest look at the intersection itself: