Posted: Nov 26, 2012 9:10 PM by Melissa Schroeder - email@example.com
Updated: Nov 26, 2012 11:18 PM
CORPUS CHRISTI -- Voters approved the Chaparral Street improvement project in a 2008 bond, but construction will just get underway in December.
Engineers and project managers went over the timeline for the transformation tonight.
Some downtown business owners are shocked to hear the Chaparral project is finally taking off.
Brad Lomax joked, "I can't believe I lived that long."
Chaparral Street, by now, was supposed to look much different then it does.
The project was supposed to be finished.
Instead, construction will begin next month.
Water Street Seafood Company owner, Brad Lomax, says it's been a long time coming, but he's excited about the changes being made to downtown.
The project will stretch from Williams to Schatzell.
There will be new lighting, landscaping, colorful pavers on the roads and sidewalks.
The width of the sidewalk will increase giving pedestrians more room and allowing restaurants to sit out chairs and tables.
Also, Chaparral is expected to go from a one way to a two way street.
At one time, city officials told us doing this might be too expensive, but the city engineer says they'll use extra funds from the 2008 bond to make it happen.
Still, Curt Broomfield -- who owns South Beach Grill -- is skeptical.
He said, "I think when they get into it, it's probably going to go over budget quickly and that's what scares me most."
It's been a bumpy road, but the city engineer says there's a light at the end of the tunnel.
He believes the $5 million -- allotted for the project -- will get the job done.
The reporter asked, "Are we guaranteed that this project is going to happen?"
City Engineer Dan Biles said, "Well, we're having a pre-construction meeting on Wednesday with the contractor and he's supposed to start within a couple of weeks. Council awarded the contract. We're moving forward."
We're told It will take ten months to complete the project and it's expected to be finished by September
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