The city has now closed off Washington Street in order to resurface the street

by: RAY PITZ - Excavation of Washington Street has begun after Railroad Street was reopened recently.With Railroad Street resurfaced, attention has turned now to the renovation of Washington Street.

Last week, the city reopened Railroad Street (which had been shut since Feb. 6 in order to dig up the old street), after the installation of a longer-lasting concrete surface complete with 12-foot-wide sidewalks on the west side of the street.

Now it’s Washington Street’s turn with similar plans.

The renovation is a continuation of the 2006 streetscape project in Old Town. Complaints voiced by some at the time were that the blue streetlight posts installed were too dramatic a change for the Old Town area and that the curbless sidewalks could potentially cause pedestrian accidents if motorists confused where the streets end and where the sidewalks begin.

Although the blue posts will remain, the sidewalks will feature small rolling curbs, highlighting a separation between the street and sidewalk, according to city officials. Also, numerous trees on both Railroad and Washington streets have been cut down with plans to replace them with a species that will grow taller before spreading out their canopies.

During Monday’s Sherwood City Council session, Tom Pessemier, the city’s assistant city manager, said while there are still details to be finished along Railroad Street, the majority of work has been completed.

“The business cooperation is greatly appreciated,” said Pessemier. “We obviously want to get this project done by (Cruisin’ Sherwood on June 8).”

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