The price of progress could cause some traffic congestion later this week in downtown Nashville.
The annual paving season is set to begin Thursday, when crews with Metro Public Works are set to begin paving roads near the Music City Center in preparation for its grand opening in May.
Areas affected include Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Lea avenues, as well as Peabody, McGavock and Demonbreun streets.
Public Works also announced plans to improve the Arcade Alley and Bankers Alley as part of its $20 million in paving projects for the year - the largest amount in more than a decade.
"This is the most money we've had since I've been here since 1995," said Mark Macy, Public Works assistant director of engineering.
Macy said, for years, the department has not received the needed dollars to repave all the roads in need.
So, over time, Macy said crews focused on those in the worst condition.
"We pave the worst ones first, and so it's just our list is bigger now," he said.
There's more than just downtown streets on the list. Macy said to expect road work signs all over the county.
"If they see a construction zone, slow down, because we have a lot of people working there," Macy said.
A Bellevue neighborhood will soon become one of those construction zones. Neighbor Kara Smart has lived in the area for a decade and has watched problems with the roads develop.
"Especially after the weather and the winter and the ice, definitely some pot holes have been noticeable," she said.
But while Smart welcomes the construction signs, she worries about the problems they could create.
"I didn't know if it was going to cause problems getting in and out of the neighborhood, but it will be nice to have a finished product," she said.
Public Works is responsible for maintaining about 5,700 miles of paved roads throughout Davidson County.
To view current Metro road closures and construction areas, visit: http://www.nashville.gov/Public-Works.aspx.
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