A recent questioner on Next Door asked for a progress report on the New Haw Creek sidewalk, set for expansion between Beverly Rd and Bell Rd.
As you might recall, this sidewalk expansion was included in a package of improvements Asheville voters approved in a November, 2016 bond referendum. The terms of the bond required all improvements be made within seven years, meaning work completed by November, 2023. As we are now 4+ years into the 7-year program, it is fair to ask when we can expect completion of the New Haw Creek sidewalk expansion.
I asked Lora Sepion, Project Manager with the City, the same question in November, 2020. Below is the answer she provided.
I am not able to get you an answer as yet regarding the schedule for installation of New Haw Creek Road Sidewalks. A large portion of the funding is coming from the NC DOT. Their projects have been put on hold due to cash flow / revenue issues. They are by state law unable to commit funds that are not actually available. Meanwhile, the City is continuing with the design and Right-Of-Way acquisition so that once the funds do come available at DOT we will be ready to go with this project. All that said, we are hoping to bid this project in early 2022.
Meanwhile, the new community engagement platform is operational. We will be working with our consultant to reach out to the community in the near future.
Again, I am sorry I could not be more definitive, but I hope this information helps.
Lora Sepion, PEProject Manager
Capital Projects Department
The City of Asheville
Ms. Sepion mentions a ‘community engagement platform,’ which is designed to allow the public to give virtual feedback. At some point in 2021 we expect the City of Asheville to release the proposed design plans for the sidewalk and with this platform you will be able to give feedback.
Like most everything else, the pandemic has slowed progress on this important and needed improvement. That said, it is my goal that when our world reopens, hopefully later this year, we can use the full range of citizen advocacy tools to address the needs of Haw Creek.
Chris Pelly, President
Haw Creek Community Association