Almost two dozen road segments have been resurfaced in the first phase of mayor Jose “Joey” Torres’ $37 million road repair project, according to city records.
As of mid-December eight road segments have been completed in the 5th Ward, five in the 3rd Ward, four each in the 4th and 6th Wards, three in the 1st Ward, and one in the 2nd Ward, according to municipal documents. Some of the roads of the segments overlap ward boundaries resulting in multiple mentions.
“Mother Nature was pretty good and so contractors were able to work longer,” said Torres on Thursday afternoon. The city started the first batch of roads a little bit late last year, said the mayor, but the auspicious weather allowed at least some of the roads to be completed before winter made its appearance.
The first phase will see the completion of 48 roads, according to officials. The city plans to complete the 170 primary roads reconstructions with handicap ramps, upgraded catch basins, and new manhole covers in three phases for $36.75 million by the end of 2017, said Torres.
“I’m not sure what percentage the 22 represent. I don’t think it represents a very large number,” said Kenneth Morris, councilman at-large. “Those roads that have been completed that’s a good thing. The fact that we got 22 paved roads in the city of Paterson isn’t a bad thing. Wish we had more done.”
Morris worried the roads may not last as long. In fact, one of the street that was finished as part of the first phases, Bridge Street, was cut open by a contractor putting down fiber optic cables.
Michael Jackson, 1st Ward councilman, raised concerns about Bridge Street being torn up so soon after it was resurfaced.
When asked about Bridge Street, Torres said: “They have to do the whole road curb to curb.” He said the contractor agreed to redo the entire street once it is finished laying the underground fiber optic cables.
The first phase contained 57 roads, but it had to be reduced to 48 streets after bids came in over budget. The city is expending $11.6 million for the first phase of the project, according to records.
“It’s encouraging the roads are being resurfaced, but there’s a whole host of streets that are not on the list but are in dire need,” said Andre Sayegh, 6th Ward councilman. He opposed the road repair project due to its high price tag. The city borrowed $35 million for the project.
Torres promised to fix city roads after receiving many complaints from voters while campaigning for a third non-consecutive term as mayor. “I won’t feel a sense of accomplishment until the entire 170 roads are done,” said the mayor.
The street segments completed as of December 16th, 2015 are:
1. Redwood Avenue from Katz to Chamberlain Avenues
2. Presidential Boulevard from Clinton to Jefferson Streets
3. Bridge Street from Presidential Boulevard to Memorial Drive
4. Chatham Avenue from Maitland to Rossiter Avenues
5. East 7th Street from 6th Avenue to Wait Street
6. Wood Street from East 5th to Wait Streets
7. East 16th Street from 7th Avenue and Lafayette Street
8. East 22nd Street from 10th Avenue to Broadway
9. Park Avenue from East 37th Street to McLean Boulevard
10. 18th Avenue from Vreeland Avenue to McLean Boulevard
11. East 24th Street from 14th to 17th Avenues
12. East 24th Street from 20th to 23rd Avenues
13. East 25th Street from Market Street to East 23rd Street (runs from 5th to 6th Wards)
14. East 26th Street from 14th to 17th Avenues
15. East 26th Street from Market Street to East 23rd Avenue (runs from 5th to 6th Wards)
16. East 27th Street from 18th Avenue to Market Street
17. East 28th Street from Market Street to 23rd Avenue
18. East 29th Street from Park to 18th Avenues
19. East 30th Street from 17th to 19th Avenues
20. East 31st Street from 17th Avenue to Market Street
21. Park Avenue from East 28th to East 33rd Streets
22. 18th Avenue from East 27th Street to Vreeland Avenue (runs from 5th to 3rd wards).