COVINGTON, Ky. (June 27, 2018) — The nearly $875,000 reconstruction of Johnson Street and Rivercenter Boulevard could begin as early as August, providing a more visible and safer connection for pedestrians who want to get from hotels on the west side of the riverfront to attractions a few blocks east.
An order accepting the bid of Riegler Blacktop Inc. of Florence as the contractor on the long-awaited project was approved Tuesday night by the Covington City Commission.
The project will include full reconstruction of the road’s surface between its intersection with Third Street and a point about 1,000 feet north and east just shy of where the road’s surface becomes brick pavers, near the Northern Kentucky Convention Center, said Covington Public Works Director Rick Davis.
The reconstructed road will transform from four lanes to three to accommodate a wider sidewalk on the south side, where the existing sidewalk is unusually narrow. The north side lacks a sidewalk. The project will also include new lighting and new storm drains to handle run-off from any future redevelopment of the nearby IRS site, Davis said.
“No. 1, that pavement has been failing for some time,” Davis said. “No. 2, the narrow sidewalk there now is neither safe nor inviting for pedestrians. That’s a problem, because this is an important corridor that connects the hotels to the west with the Convention Center, the restaurants in the RiverCenter complex, as well as the Roebling Suspension Bridge that leads back and forth from Reds’ games.”
The goal, he said, is to create a functional and appealing roadway, sidewalks and streetscape “that contribute to Covington’s economic development and vitality.”
Covington will use several federal sources to pay for the reconstruction. The project had previously been approved by the city commission and has been in the planning and design stage since 2016.