ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — After more than two years of construction – and for some, major headaches – 10th Street is finally re-opened to thru traffic, but the project itself is still not finished.
A VDOT spokesperson says the department originally set a deadline of fall 2019, which it pushed back to December 2019 because of extensive utility work.
He says VDOT has fined the contractors $2500 per day since then for missing that deadline, and will continue to do so until everything – including sidewalks, driveways, handicap ramps, and more – is complete. He says that is expected to take a few more weeks.
Nevertheless, neighbors are excited to see asphalt instead of mud and potholes.
“Walking up and down the street, it was pretty crazy. Because every time you walked up and down the street, your shoes got stuffed up by the gravel and any time you drove up and down the street, you always had a dirty car. You could never keep a clean car over here,” said Brandon Brown, who has lived just off of 10th Street for more than a decade.
Brown says he’s glad his car will stay relatively dust-free moving forward.
“The more we can do to 10th Street, the better,” he said.
Just up the street, Reginald Swanson says he’s also glad to have the road open so he can drive straight home instead of having to take a daily detour.
“It’s been a mess! Really, for me it has, and I know for a bunch of others it has,” he said.
Swanson says, even with upgrades like traffic lights and bike lanes, he is skeptical the nearly $11 million final product will have been worth the headache.
“I guess what they call it ‘making it better,’ we’ll have to see,” he said.