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New sidewalk installed near Lewis & Clark Elementary School

City hopes $49k project will improve student access to school, pool

SPOTLIGHT PHOTO: MARK MILLER - A new concrete sidewalk is being constructed along the north side of Eisenschmidt Lane in St. Helens.A Scappoose-based contractor is putting in about 250 feet of sidewalk along the north side of Eisenschmidt Lane in St. Helens.

The work being done by TFT Construction will provide a safer path for children walking along that street, near Lewis & Clark Elementary School and Eisenschmidt Pool, according to Sue Nelson, the city of St. Helens’ engineering director.

“A lot of kids use that to get to the school and also to the pool,” said Nelson.

Nelson said the old asphalt path, which was separated from the roadway by what she called a “very broken curb,” was “not an appropriate asphalt sidewalk.”

TFT Construction will also be paving about 280 feet of roadway alongside the new concrete sidewalk, Nelson added.

“That’s also a pretty major thoroughfare for ... school buses and parents picking up and dropping off their children,” she said.

The paving and sidewalk work is a city project. Nelson said neither the pool nor school district asked for the work to be done or contributed financially to the project.

“We’ve had our eye on that stretch of pathway for a little bit,” she remarked.

Nonetheless, the St. Helens School District hailed the work in a brief statement Tuesday, Aug. 4.

“The St. Helens School District is pleased with any improvement that can be made to ensure our children’s safety,” the statement read. “As a district, we would like to thank the City of St. Helens, as well as TFT Construction, for all their hard work and effort to provide a safe path for our children.”

TFT Construction submitted a $48,912 bid to do the work, which the city approved. Nelson said that amount may vary slightly from the total cost.

Work is expected to wrap up within the next two weeks, according to Nelson.

Eisenschmidt Lane will be closed during paving. A detour has been set up along South 9th Street to maintain public access to Eisenschmidt Pool, which is located at 1070 Eisenschmidt Lane, St. Helens.