Part of Route 7 to stay closed another week

May 14—The portion of Route 7 in Oneonta's East End that is under construction likely will stay closed a week longer than anticipated.

Since April 10, Route 7 between Rose Avenue and Park Street has been blocked to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic, with detours around the intersection into residential areas to the south, as crews replace a box culvert over Glenwood Creek.

The project's original end date was May 31.

Under the state Department of Transportation's current schedule, project completion and road reopening has been pushed to June 7, Oneonta Mayor Mark Drnek said in a statement.

"We are all anticipating the June 1 opening of the Cooperstown All Star Village, and I know there is concern for the potential impact on business," he said. "We will do all we can to keep the DOT motivated and on schedule."

Josh Heller, NYSDOT spokesperson, corroborated the delay, but declined to elaborate.

"Due to unforeseen circumstances, the project is expected to be completed next month," Heller said Tuesday, May 14 via email.

Drnek said via email Monday that he received "a number of requests" from the public for updated information.

The city reached out to NYSDOT asking for an update on the schedule and an explanation of times when there hasn't been any activity.

"It seems that the majority of the issue has been the weather," Drnek said.

There were "a few instances where they had prepped some work to then have it washed away."

In addition to the weather related delays, there was an issue with a crane that delayed setting the precast concrete structures.

Upstate set the box culvert Monday, as well as six of the 10 structures. The rest were slated to be set Tuesday.

"I am sorry for the delays, although they have been out of our control," Drnek said. "Cross your fingers for good weather."

Upstate Companies is the project contractor.

The state awarded funds to the city for the replacement of the culvert from the Bridge NY program, which the city applied for in 2018, according to Daily Star archives.

The total project cost is $1.2 million, including construction, design, construction inspection and right-of-way.

The grant amount provided through Bridge NY was $690,500 and the city contributed the remainder through the general fund.

The total contract for Upstate Companies is $807,703.

The project has been in the works since December 2020. It was planned to begin in 2022 when first presented to Oneonta's Common Council.

Because of the problems, the area is prone to flooding.

The new culvert will improve the water flow, address flooding issues and, according to the grant program, must be a structure that lasts at least 50 years.