Tuesday January 22, 2013

PITTSFIELD -- Hoping to avert delays or snafus in Pittsfield’s summer streetwork projects, Ward 4 Councilor Christopher J. Connell is asking the public works commissioner to update councilors on plans for 2013 projects well before spring.

In a petition on the council’s agenda for 7:30 tonight, Connell requests that "Commissioner [Bruce] Collingwood present to the City Council an update of the 2013 schedule for street repaving, sidewalk reconstruction, street line painting and street sweeping."

Connell said Monday that he informed city officials during a meeting in September that he would make this request -- after he said streetwork projects during the summer were delayed, prompting numerous resident complaints to councilors.

Public works officials had attended a council session to address councilor complaints, Connell said.

"Last year, projects started so much later, and we had a very early season of warm weather," Connell said, adding that some projects "didn’t get going until the fall, and some bids weren’t put out until the end of summer. I feel that’s too late."

A number of councilors "were very upset," Connell said, "as we were the ones getting the calls."

The state aid and other funding was in hand, he said, "but it took so long to get started, I think we shot ourselves in the foot."

Collingwood could not be reached Monday as city offices were closed for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.


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Also on the council agenda for tonight is a notation that Council President Kevin Sherman has referred to the Traffic Commission a request from the Pittsfield Cooperative Bank and Centennial Realty Holdings, LLC, to change a section of Burbank Street from one-way to two-way traffic.

Mayor Daniel L. Bianchi has forwarded the appointment of Nicole L. Boucher as assistant city treasurer to the council.

And Connell has a petition seeking the installation of speed bumps on Emerson Avenue.

To reach Jim Therrien:
jtherrien@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6247
On Twitter: @BE_therrien