Sidewalks & Curbing
The existing sidewalk materials vary, including asphalt, concrete resurfaced with asphalt, and plain concrete, much of which is in poor condition. Some of the asphalt resurfacing was placed about 10 years ago as a temporary measure to address spalled and misaligned concrete. The underlying concrete sidewalk is more than 50 years old. The existing curbing is a mix of concrete, asphalt and granite. At a minimum, the sidewalk seriously detracts from the appearance of a very important section of the downtown and the rough condition creates maintenance problems. Installation of benches, trash cans and new trees has been delayed because of the poor condition of the sidewalk.
Currently, 15 lights illuminate both the sidewalks and street. They are 30-foot tall aluminum poles with cobra head fixtures (250 watt mercury vapor bulbs), which are considered outdated and inefficient. They are owned by Green Mountain Power (GMP) and have been leased by the City for many years. Power is supplied through a failing duct bank under the sidewalk that will need to be replaced regardless. In fact, GMP recently abandoned a failed section of the system, substituting it with a temporary aerial feed. The existing lights are felt to throw unattractive and inadequate light, and do not match the style of lights or poles elsewhere in the City. State Street was previously identified as Phase II of the downtown street lighting replacement initiative. Phase I was Main Street, which was completed last year. It is proposed that the GMP lights be removed and new City owned/maintained lights and poles be installed along the entire project length.
The City owns the sidewalk to within a couple feet of the buildings and store fronts. It is proposed to replace the walks in their entirety to the facade of the buildings and store front thresholds, assuming property owners will approve temporary construction rights for this purpose. If requested, the City and the MDCA will assist the property owners with access improvements for compliance with State and Federal access requirements and which protect historic elements.