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Officials Break Ground on Fair Oaks Blvd. Work

Project is one phase of changing look of Carmichael's main street.

The community celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2009 and said Wednesday some residents may feel as though it has taken that long to get going on renovating .

Indeed, Peters and other Carmichael and county leaders grabbed shovels Wednesday to move dirt in a ceremonial groundbreaking that brought the much-debated corridor plan into reality.

"Well, we're here at last," Peters said as community leaders gathered in the parking lot as constuction workers labored nearby at the intersection with Marconi Avenue. "This is the first step toward creating a Main Street district for Carmichael."

Carmichael's 72,000 residents will benefit from having Fair Oaks Boulevard between Engle Road and Kenneth Avenue remodeled in the coming years to make it a better thoroughfare for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists, Peters said.

The county board of supervisors approved the corridor plan in September. The Phase 1 project will provide complete street improvements at the Fair Oaks at Marconi intersection including:

-Curb, gutter, sidewalk, and bicycle lane improvements

-Landscaping/streetscape amenities

-ADA traffic signal modifications and upgrades

-Improved street lighting.

-Improved pedestrian safety by removing the channelization island at the northwest corner of Fair Oaks and Marconi.

Martin General Engineering, Inc., of Rancho Cordova is the contractor for the Phase 1 project. This $950,000 project is being funded with Measure A sales tax and developer fees, county officials said.

A Phase 2 project is expected to startup in 2014 and will provide roadway infrastructure improvements needed for a portion of the main street district. Phase 2 improvements will include installation of landscaping and streetscape elements, improvements for ADA compliance and transit access, bicycle and pedestrian facilities and traffic signal modifications.

Estimated Phase 2 costs are $5 million. SACOG Community Design Funds will provide $4 million of the overall project costs, officials said. Future main street project phases will be developed as funding becomes available.

"I'm extremely excited this project is going forward," said . "You will see quite a change in Carmichael with new businesses coming in."

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