20191002_gb_downtown (copy)

The $1.65 million downtown project is still on the horizon for the City of Gretna.

Expected to get underway this summer, spring flooding led to a shortage of contractors and no one to complete the project.

Though contractors expressed interest, they were simply too busy to add the project to their summer schedule, said Dan Giitinger, the city’s development services director.

Though the timeline has been adjusted, project scope remains the same.

Construction limits include McKenna Avenue between Burns Place to half a block north of Figg Street, along with the Angus Street intersection.

The project will include concrete curb and gutter construction, concrete sidewalk and driveways construction, ADA pedestrian access, fencing, water main replacement and storm sewer construction.

A mid-block crossing area will feature colored pavement, accent lighting, trees, benches and trash receptacles and will serve as a major crossing area for pedestrians.

Straight-in parking is also slated to replace downtown’s current angled parking.

Water main replacement is expected to begin this week, starting at the south end of McKenna Avenue near the Gretna Public Library.

“That water line will hopefully be done this year,” Giitinger said.

The bidding process has begun for the streetscape project, which is scheduled to begin in the spring. The goal is to reach completion before the Gretna Days celebration in late July.

All downtown businesses will still be accessible, though access may be limited on some days.

The McKenna Avenue and Angus Street intersection will be the final street piece, as officials want to keep the intersection open until school is out.

The Gretna Downtown Association has saved some money with the idea to possibly help enhance the project in some way.

“We just don’t want to lose the original heart of the town,” said Marcia Kuiper, GDA secretary.

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