Plaza transportation project won’t be done until Aug. 16

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Great Neck Plaza Mayor Jean Celender, seen here at a previous meeting, said she believes the contractor for the transportation enhancement project – or TEP – is working in good faith and will get the project done by Aug. 16. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)
Great Neck Plaza Mayor Jean Celender, seen here at a previous meeting, said she believes the contractor for the transportation enhancement project – or TEP – is working in good faith and will get the project done by Aug. 16. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

Great Neck Plaza village officials pushed back the expected completion date of a transportation enhancement project – or TEP – more than a month last Wednesday night, citing weather woes in June and a “good faith” effort on the part of the contractor.

J. Anthony Enterprises had been awarded a $993,674.40 contract almost exactly a year ago to make the area of Welwyn Road and Shoreward Drive more pedestrian friendly. Among the planned changes were bulb-out sidewalks, shared bike lanes and the creation of a small plaza in front of the U.S. Post Office.

Great Neck Plaza Mayor Jean Celender said the original expected “substantial completion date” was to be June 28. But June’s wet weather made restriping impossible and prevented some pavers from being installed, she said, and the work in general is very “intricate.”

“They lost a great deal of the time in June,” Celender said, but noted this should not affect the disbursement of state funds.

The village and the contractor ultimately agreed on a completion date of Aug. 16, Celender said, with the understanding that certain plantings and other outstanding items would be done by Oct. 19.

Trustees had approved nearly $33,000 more in spending to support engineering services from LKB Engineering for the transportation enhancement project back in June, with $27,800 for inspection work and $5,125 for closeout services.

Asked last Wednesday if more funding would be required for LKB’s engineering services because of the later expected completion date, Celender said the previously approved $32,925 covers this.

The origins of the project date back five years, when the state Transportation Department agreed to pay for a bulk of the project through federal funds in 2014. Project plans were later outlined in 2016.

Village officials have previously said delays on the project stemmed from back-and-forths with the state, which is administering a federal grant paying for 80 percent of the project.

In unrelated business, trustees approved a conditional use permit for S-Mart, a Japanese convenience store, and adjourned a hearing for a mixed-use development at 16 Maple Drive to Wednesday, Aug. 21.

The next Board of Trustees meeting will take place on Wed., Aug. 2, at Village Hall.

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