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Napa Street gets a shave

JUSTIN CADIENTE was shaving edges off sidewalks on Napa Street Wednesday morning. Bill Hoban/Index-Tribune

JUSTIN CADIENTE was shaving edges off sidewalks on Napa Street Wednesday morning. Bill Hoban/Index-Tribune

By By Don Frances INDEX-TRIBUNE NEWS EDITOR

A two-man crew made its way down West Napa Street on Wednesday, shaving the edges off those parts of the sidewalk that had been pushed up by tree roots.

With one wielding a saw cutter and vacuum and the other supervising and measuring, they found spots a pedestrian might trip on and ground them down until the sidewalk was nice and smooth.

“We’re pretty much going to fix any trip hazard that’s a quarter-inch and greater,” said Justin Cadiente, of Precision Concrete, who supervised the operation. They expected to have all of Napa between Highway 12 and Fifth Street West done by Thursday, he added.

Cadiente was also taking notes, recording those places where the sidewalk was so crooked the entire section would have to be replaced.

Besides that stretch, “They’ve already done around the Plaza and a little bit around Broadway,” said City Public Works Director and Engineer Dan Takasugi, who first proposed the project to City Council members last fall.

Takasugi’s idea was to be more proactive when it comes to fixing trip hazards on Sonoma’s sidewalks. With the council’s consent, he divided the city into 11 sectors, and will tackle each one in phases. The first phase wraps up this week.

“If council approves another $50,000, then we’ll take on Phase II next year,” he said. Each phase costs that much, with half going to saw cutting, the other half to cost shares.

“There are some places that cannot be saw cut,” Takasugi explained. In those cases, “we have to notify the abutting property owner that it’s their responsibility to fix” the hazard.

But the city is offering to cover half of that expense up to $1,000.

Takasugi mentioned a couple other projects in the pipeline as well. For example: “We’ve awarded our contract to improve the traffic signal at Napa-Leveroni-Broadway, down by Friedman’s.”

That project won’t start until mid-February, he said, due to “lead time to order the signal arms.”