City Greenlights Next Phases in Gaines Street Revamp Plan

The Tallahassee City Commission has approved the beginning of phase II of the Gaines Street Revitalization Plan.

The city’s Director of Public Works Gabriel Menendez said the phase II construction covers the improvements between Macomb Street and Stone Valley Way.

“It will basically reconstruct that portion of Gaines Street to match what we have already done in Phase I between Macomb and Monroe,” Menendez said.

“The project will take the industrial look [on Gaines Street] that you have now and make it more of a pedestrian-friendly environment.”

The new renovations will include a new curb and gutter sidewalks, pavement, asphalt, landscaping, reconstruction of underground duct banks, retaining walls, crosswalks and streetlights.

Menendez said the commission approved the award to Allen’s Excavation, an incorporated contractor.

“At this point we will take that approval, finalize the contract with Allen, and move into the phase construction,” Menendez said.

“My anticipation is that we will be able to start construction just after the first of the year, and it should take about 12 to 18 months to get that construction completed.”

The budget for Segment II is $6.8 million, and the funds available for Segment III are $1 million. The second phase will not be the final phase to Tallahassee’s new look.

“Phase III is the final phase of Gaines Street, which runs from Lake Bradford to Stone Valley Way. It includes intersection improvements and so on,”

said Menendez.

“The million dollar balance that is still in the program for that phase was efficient. We believe it is at this point, but we couldn’t provide any more details because there are just too many moving parts.”

The third phase of the project is the section of Gaines Street that is adjacent to the new College Town development.

The development includes the intersection improvements on Stadium Drive at the intersection of Lake Bradford and Gaines.

College Town is said to become a link between downtown and FSU’s campus, according to a 2010 FSU news release.

The new development will also be adjacent to the new intersection of FAMU Way and Lake Bradford Road.

Menendez said there is a lot of private work construction happening in the area, as well as the ongoing public effort to revitalize the area.

He said with all the changing parts of the Gaines Street project as a whole, he cannot be sure what the final product will look like.

“We do know that it is going to enhance the aesthetics there, and tie into and match what we have proposed now in Phase II in terms of the pedestrian amenities and beautification,” said Menendez