Parishioners at Highland Park Presbyterian Church might want to start setting their alarms a little earlier on Sunday mornings.
Next week, construction crews will begin work on a major public works project for the city of University Park that will include replacement of the bridge on McFarlin Boulevard over the Turtle Creek pond, just east of the church and just south of UP city hall.
The project includes a comprehensive dredging of the pond and significant landscaping work, so the street will be closed for several months, at least.
“This is really going to impact traffic,” said Bud Smallwood, UP director of public works. “The street will not be passable for about a year.”
Although the neighboring streets will be accessible to local residents, signs will detour traffic to University Boulevard. But the construction will impact parking for the church, commutes to and from Highland Park Middle School, and will mean plenty of construction traffic for residents along McFarlin east of Preston Road.
Construction hours will generally be 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays, with limited work on Saturdays but none on Sundays or holidays.
“The truck traffic during the day will be pretty heavy to and from the construction zone,” Smallwood said. “We’ve got a pretty good track record during construction projects with our residents of allowing ingress and egress to their homes.”
We wrote previously about the specifics of the project and the reasoning behind it, as well as its connection to a dam being built downstream on private property.
So what’s the timeline? The street will be closed on July 20. The existing bridge will be demolished, and then the pond will be drained for the duration of the project. The really heavy equipment should arrive on-site in early 2016.