DES MOINES, Iowa -- “It's bad, real bad,” said Ron Choate.
Drivers say the condition of Fleur Drive leaves a lot to be desired, and the city agrees.
“Many of the viewers have expressed concerns about potholes and issues with the condition of Fleur, so we are doing a full reconstruction of the pavement. It's a full, brand new pavement section for Fleur,” said City Engineer Steve Naber.
The project will be in three phases, and construction starts April 1:
- Phase 1: Fleur Drive Northbound Lanes
from Watrous Avenue to G. Flagg Parkway
Spring 2019 to Summer 2020
- Phase 2: Fleur Drive Southbound Lanes
from Watrous Avenue to Bell Avenue
Fall 2020 to Fall 2021
- Phase 3: Fleur Drive Northbound and Southbound Lanes
from McKinley Avenue to Watrous Avenue
Spring 2022 to Fall 2022
In the meantime, drivers headed northbound will be able to use one lane of Fleur's southbound lane.
"Fleur Drive carries almost 30,000 vehicles a day, and so we felt it was critical to phase this project in a manner to allow traffic to continue through. We know this will be very impactful and we ask our constituents to be patient. This will cause traffic delays, but at least allowing one lane in each direction will allow the main artery to stay open,” said Naber.
The city knows it is not ideal, but there is no other way to do it. The results will alleviate what drivers say is one of the most annoying parts of the road, watering the flowerbeds in the median.
“It hasn't been good for a long time, they got to worry about them flowers instead of the street. That's the worst part, I think. They cut it down to one lane every time they do it,” said Choate.
“So as part of the project we also will be installing irrigation systems within the planters that are in the medians on Fleur Drive, which I think will help with minimizing the time that folks are in there watering the plants,” said Naber.
The total cost of phase one is about $7.4 million.