Grant to pay for part of road work

BEACON FALLS — State funding will go a long way in making repairs to West Road.

In September, the town received a $500,000 STEAP grant for the reconstruction of West Road.

West Road, which runs from Rimmon Hill Road to the Oxford town line, is a heavily-traveled road, First Selectman Christopher Bielik said. The road, which is approximately half a mile, has significant drainage issues, he said. During the winter, he said, those drainage issues lead the road to ice over and become very dangerous.

In addition, Bielik said, there are portions of the road that are very narrow and could be widened.

“It is a road that is in need of attention and has been on our radar,” Bielik said.

The entire reconstruction of West Road is expected to cost around $700,000, according to Bielik. This means the town will have to pay for $200,000 of the project.

“We are in a strong enough financial position that we are looking for capital projects,” Bielik said.

Bielik said the town is awaiting the official award letter from the state, and will have to work with the Connecticut Department of Transportation to ensure everything is in order before the project can start.

“I would not expect that we will break ground sooner than late spring or early summer,” Bielik said.

This is not the first time in recent years the town has received STEAP funding for road work. In the past three years, the town received grants for work on Blackberry Hill Road and Highland Avenue.

Although the town had received STEAP grants before, Bielik said he has learned never to expect them.

“We are always look for opportunities for STEAP grants,” Bielik said. “STEAP is highly competitive. If you apply, you never expect to get it.”

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