Emerson Avenue upgrades get green light

Planning for a $3.5 million project to resurface and redevelop a key Greenwood route is beginning, and construction could begin next year.

The Greenwood Redevelopment Commission has approved spending $337,000 to hire Rundell Ernstberger to create plans for work along Emerson Avenue, from Main Street to County Line Road. The work would include a full resurfacing of the street, replacing the center turn lane with grass and concrete medians, new signals at three intersections, decorative street lighting and a 10-foot-wide trail on the west side of the road.

Plans would take about six months to create. If the project is approved, work likely would take place in the summer of 2018, Greenwood capital projects manager Kevin Steinmetz said.

The street is due for repairs and was last repaved in 2000, Steinmetz said. The city’s 2016 street survey rated that section of Emerson Avenue as being a five on a 10-point scale.

The redevelopment commission also has been considering similar plans for Madison Avenue, from Smith Valley Road to County Line Road, which is expected to cost $12.5 million. The work planned for the 1.5-mile stretch of Emerson Avenue isn’t as extensive as the Madison Avenue plans.

City officials said the work to Emerson Avenue will help spur business development.

Along Emerson Avenue, nine empty properties larger than two acres are available. Improving the road will help attract quality businesses to those 47 acres of land, Steinmetz said.

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Jacob Tellers is a reporter at the Daily Journal. He can be reached at jtellers@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2702.