Pruden intersection project moves forward

Published 10:12 pm Monday, March 9, 2020

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The city received the go-ahead to get the land it needs for a project to improve the intersection of Pruden Boulevard at Prudence Road near the College and Career Academy at Pruden.

Following a public hearing last Wednesday in which no one spoke, council voted 7-0, with Donald Goldberg absent, in favor of allowing the city to acquire the right of way, as well as any needed permanent or temporary easements and property.

The total land the city would need would amount to just under one acre, according to Public Works Director L.J. Hansen, though he noted that there will be some public utility easements needed in the general vicinity of the project area.

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The road project will raise the median to separate the two-way traffic, allow for protected left-turn movements along with curb and gutters and install a right-hand turn lane with a curb and gutter.

Hansen said the intersection did not warrant a traffic signal.

“This improvement will allow for future growth,” Hansen said. “And more importantly, it will provide a measure of safety for cars and buses turning in and out of the (former) Pruden Center.”

Hansen said right-of-way acquisition would begin “almost immediately.” After utility relocations are complete, the advertisement for construction would take place in August 2021, with construction beginning by December 2021.

“I’m cautiously optimistic we’ll be able to beat these dates,” Hansen said. “Some of it depends upon the timing of funding coming in, but we expect to be under construction next year.”

Public Utilities will have a water project along Pruden Boulevard for which it is seeking easements. Council voted to hold a public hearing March 18 on whether to authorize the city to acquire permanent and temporary easements in the 4100 through 4300 blocks of Pruden Boulevard for the U.S. Route 460 – Pruden Boulevard Water Transmission Main project, which is being constructed as part of the intersection improvements project.

The water transmission main project will extend a 20-inch water transmission main along Route 460/Pruden Boulevard from Lake Prince Drive to the city’s boundary with Isle of Wight County.

The water main is expected to serve two purposes — transporting the Western Tidewater Water Authority’s contracted water supply from the city’s Robert House Water Treatment Plan to Isle of Wight County’s Windsor Service District, and provide future city water service to the Route 460 corridor.