Broadview Board Approves Work On Braga Drive, Alleys

Monday, May 13, 2019 || By Igor Studenkov || @maywoodnews 

During a meeting on April 22, Broadview’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve ordinances that will allow the village to use state and federal funds, and a portion of its own motor fuel tax revenue, to install three “green alleys” near Roosevelt Road and to refurbish a portion of the Braga Drive corridor.

According to Kevin McGrier, Broadview’s clerk, the alleys identified for upgrades include the two running north-south through the middle of the two blocks bound by Roosevelt Road, 25th Avenue, Harvard Street and 24th Avenue, as well as the alley running through the middle of the block between Fillmore Street, 23rd Avenue, Harvard Street and 22nd Avenue

Back in March, the village board voted unanimously to approve an agreement with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago for a project that would help reduce flooding by installing the green alleys.

The alleys are designed to ensure that more water seeps into the ground instead of going into the sewer. Regular asphalt isn’t permeable, so when it rains, the water stays on the surface, eventually draining into the sewer. With the green alleys, the pavement is permeable, so the water instead seeps into the ground. This means that less water stays on the surface and goes into the sewer, reducing the strain on the sewer system and reducing flooding in the process.

According to an earlier Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago press release, the project is expected to benefit 73 homes, businesses and “other structures.” The agency previously authorized a grant to help cover the improvement costs.

On April 22, village officials said that the project will be paid for through $300,000 of Community Development Block Grant funding, a Department of Housing and Urban Development grant that can be used for improving infrastructure, among other things.

It is not clear how much of the funding will come from the MWRD grant and how much will come from the CDBG grant. Broadview Mayor Katrina Thompson did not respond to emails seeking comment.

In response to questions about how this would affect garbage pickup, Goumas said that his company has been talking with the public works and police departments to ensure that they adjust their operations accordingly and that parking restrictions are enforced.

The Braga Drive project will include the drive itself, as well as a small section of Parkes Drive, between Braga Drive and 21st Avenue. This represents the first phase of a two-phase project.

The second phase will include the section of 21st Avenue, between Parkes Drive and 19th Street, and the section of 19th Street, between 21st and 17th avenues.

“The road will be completely reconstructed — road, gutter, sidewalk, concrete pavement, storm sewer improvements,” Goumas said.”[We will be] replacing the water main on [Parkes Drive], as well.”

He said that, as with the alleys, the new pavement will be permeable, and the street will have other green infrastructure. The contractors will also be putting in a bike lane. The eventual goal, he explained, is to allow cyclists to bike from the Broadview Village Square shopping center to 25th Avenue. 

Goumas added that 80 percent of the project’s cost will be covered by the Illinois Department of Transportation, with Broadview covering the remaining 20 percent using its Motor Fuel Tax revenue. VFP

Contact: thevillagefreepress@gmail.com | Facebook: @maywoodnews

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