CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- More than a half-mile of Virginia Street through downtown Charleston will get a fresh coat of blacktop this summer as part of the city's annual street paving program, which City Council members approved Monday evening.
Large segments of Oakridge Drive and Barlow Drive, and more than a mile of Bakers Fork Road on the eastern edge of the city, are also included in the $1.1 million contract awarded to West Virginia Paving, the low bidder on the contract.
In all, 35 streets in 13 of Charleston's 21 wards are scheduled for paving this year, all with funds from the city's $2-a-week city user fee, according to a list from the city engineer's office.
The top priority is Virginia Street, from Elk River to McFarland Street, City Engineer Chris Knox said.
"Because of the high traffic it will be a nighttime project -- two nights of milling, one night of paving. The street will reopen during the day but traffic could be limited to one lane, he said.
"We hope to have the Charleston Sanitary Board and all other utility companies adjust and reset their manhole covers and the castings around them," Knox said.
In addition, two alleys in Kanawha City will be milled because of drainage complaints, Knox said -- the alleys between Kanawha Avenue and Virginia Avenue in the 3700 and 3800 blocks.
"Over the years, we sometimes have alleys that are paved layer upon layer so that the alleys wind up higher in elevation than neighbors' yards," Knox said.
To prevent runoff problems, the alleys will be milled and a new layer of asphalt will be shaped to drain toward the middle of the alley, he said.
Streets scheduled for paving are:
Ward 2 -- York Avenue from Hannah Drive to end.
Ward 3 -- Barton Street from Beech Avenue to Washington Street and Beech from Early Street to Barton.