The City of Newberry has pulled together with the Newberry County Transportation Committee (CTC) as well as the South Carolina Department of Transportation to address the community’s concerns on repairs needed to Main Street.

The CTC has approved the City of Newberry $440,000 for the full depth patching project of Main Street. The areas that will be worked on include Main Street starting at the Holman Street intersection and ending at the Kinard Street intersection, approximately three-quarters of a mile.

The patching work will be bid out by the city’s Public Works department, with plans being to begin that work in early 2021. Mac Bartley, city public works director, said the work will be completed by closing Main Street one block at a time to cause the least inconvenience to traffic.

Bartley said the problems on Main Street originate under the asphalt with the road sub-base, and that it has multiple defective areas. Full depth patching, Bartley said consists of sawing the defective areas and removing the two-inch asphalt surface course and six inches of concrete underneath, followed by excavating the sub-base as necessary.

“A sub-base of approved fill material will be added followed by a two-inch layer of asphalt surface course,” Bartley said.

All work will be done according to the SCDOT’s standard specifications for highway construction. Based on their weather and temperature restrictions, if the temperature reaches 45 degrees and rising, work should be able to be completed safely.

Contractors will coordinate with the City of Newberry Utilities department to make any repairs or upgrades to any underground utilities as the patching is completed.

Utilities Director Tim Baker said the coordination between utilities and the road work was done to minimize the number of road closures for the public. Baker said the city’s sewer line underneath Main Street had been inspected through camera inspection and was in good shape, apart from a few point repairs that would take place in conjunction with the patching of the road.

It’s important to assess utilities and make repairs prior to a complete resurfacing of the road, Baker said as the milling process could sometimes damage lines that were previously in good condition. Completing these point repairs could prevent issues in the future where the resurfaced road must be opened back up.

Following the full depth patching, the next step for the completion of the Main Street upgrades is a complete resurfacing.

Jeremy Knight with SCDOT said while he couldn’t say for sure when the road would be fully resurfaced, that he felt optimistic.

“Because Main Street is a high-volume traffic road, it ranks high on our resurfacing list,” Knight said.

Knight said that Main Street had been included in SCDOT’s 2022 resurfacing program and that the planning phase, which includes the allocating of funding, would soon begin.

“This time of year is when we get our funding for 2022 and we will find out how much we have to spend on that resurfacing program,” Knight said.

The 2022 program will be finalized, he said in February or March of 2021, with work beginning the following year. If Main Street did not make the list of projects for 2022, Knight said it should be on the next year, for 2023 projects.

Mayor Foster Senn described the project as an excellent partnership by the city, the CTC and SCDOT to solve a difficult issue.

“We are very appreciative of the CTC for the funding and the SCDOT for their assistance and eventual repaving,” Senn said.

City Manager Matt DeWitt said the city thanked the CTC and SCDOT for their partnership in helping to ensure Main Street provides a smooth journey into the city’s history and beautiful downtown for residents and visitors alike.