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Traffic woes on Broadway in South Portland to last up to 90 days

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Traffic woes on Broadway in South Portland to last up to 90 days

SOUTH PORTLAND — There's good news and bad news for frustrated motorists travelling along Broadway, which once again is a construction zone this summer.

The finishing touches are being applied to a paving project from Anthoine to Lincoln streets, leaving a smooth black layer of asphalt on a once rocky stretch of road.

But a sewer project from Cash Corner to Wescott Road could take up to 90 days to complete.

Pat Cloutier, director of Water Resource Protection, said the sewer project is part of a $3.85 million upgrade to the Long Creek pump station, located behind Wild Willy's on Western Avenue.

The upgrades are needed to handle the increase in sewer and storm water produced on the city's west end, which has experienced rapid growth both in commercial and residential development since the original system was installed.

Once the project is complete, there will be fewer storm-water discharges into the Fore River, which should help improve water quality.

"By doubling the capacity at this pumping station, we're anticipating it will handle all of the flow from this area," Cloutier said.

Cloutier said the Long Creek station is the last Combined Sewer Overflow in the west end, leaving only five remaining throughout the city. At one point, the city had 28 CSOs, which discharge raw sewerage into the water during heavy rain storms.

City Manager Jim Gailey said crews have 90 days to complete the Broadway portion of the project, which started last week. But city officials hope to wrap things up in 30 to 45 days, he said.

Drivers are encouraged to seek alternative routes during construction.

The project, portions of which will continue through February, is being paid for through a combination of federal stimulus money and funding through the city's annual Capital Improvement Plan.

Randy Billings an be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or rbillings@theforecaster.net