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Erie County on path to road redemption

Erie County highway crews are on the fast track to repair many of the county’s winter-scarred roads.

Road reconstruction – including oil and chip repairs, repaving and strip-patching – already has kicked off from Clarence to Evans, with more to come, said County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz.

“We will be working to improve some of the worst roads in the county’s vast inventory, including highways that receive some of the most complaints in Erie County as part of our commitment to improving the infrastructure,” Poloncarz said Thursday in a written release.

The projects total over $11.3 million, and the major work has been split into two schedules; the first began Thursday on Hopkins Road in Amherst, while the second will begin in August on Sowles Road in Hamburg.

The county’s total 2014 road repair and reconstruction plan includes more than $29.5 million in projects. That is on top of the existing capital work on other county roads that commenced in 2013 and is continuing in 2014, including the reconstruction of North French/Robinson Road in Amherst.

Mill and overlay work was scheduled to begin Thursday on Hopkins Road from Dodge Road to Plaza Drive in Amherst. Other routes scheduled for repaving under a $2.3 million contract with Occhino Paving Corp. of West Seneca include: Cayuga Creek Road from William Street to Harlem Road, and Rowley Road from Indian to Borden roads in Cheektowaga; and Lake Avenue from McKinley Parkway to South Park Avenue in Hamburg.

The second schedule of roadwork will begin in August and is part of a $3.2 million contract with Amherst Paving. It includes repaving work on Sowles Road from Camp Road to McKinley Parkway, and Bayview Road from McKinley to Abbott Road in Hamburg; as well as Pleasant Road from Amsdell to Route 75 in Orchard Park. Also included are Eden Evans Center Road from Interstate 90 to Derby Road, and Eckhardt from Route 75 to East Eden Road in Eden.

Highway crews will also be conducting $2 million in oil and chip repairs on about 81 miles of county roads. Blakely Corners, Knox, Mill Street, West Falls and Willardshire in the Town of Aurora, along with Behm and Gartman roads in the Town of Orchard Park will be completed.

Clarence District crews will be working on Carney, Cedar, Koepsell, Meahl, Scotland and Steiner roads in the Town of Newstead, as well as Peter’s Corners in the Town of Alden and Tonawanda Creek Road in the Town of Clarence.

Crews from the East Concord District will focus on Moore, Sharp, Snyder, Wheeler and Spaulding roads in the Town of Concord; Collins Center-Zoar and West Becker in the Town of Collins; and Pratham and Middle in the Town of Sardinia.

Oil and chipping will be conducted in five towns in the Hamburg District, with Bagdad, Old Bagdad and Taylor Hollow/Aldrich in the Town of Collins; Brant Reservation in the Town of Brant; Chestnut Ridge, Rice and West Tillen in the Town of Boston; Church in the Town of Eden; and Delamater/Mill and Delamater roads in the Town of Evans all scheduled for work. County highway crews will also be conducting about $1.4 million in micro-paving operations after oil and chipping has been completed.

Roads targeted for micro-paving include Center Street in the Town of Aurora, East River and Whitehaven roads in Grand Island, Boston State Road in the Town of Boston, and Seneca Creek Road in the Town of West Seneca.

Using surplus funds recently approved by the County Legislature, highway crews will be conducting extensive patching and strip patching work on dozens of roads all across the county. This will be done on an “as needed” basis determined by the local district engineers, Poloncarz said.