Scarborough Public Works held a public meeting regarding the Spurwink Road Traffic & Pedestrian Improvement Project. Courtesy Photo/Scarborough Public Works

SCARBOROUGH — Scarborough Public Works held a public meeting regarding the Spurwink Road Project and improvements planned for about two miles of the road, such as repaving and adding bike lane.

On June 29, town employees from the Public Works Department and project engineers presented information outlining the Spurwink Road Traffic & Pedestrian Improvement Project. The presentation included information on the findings of the planning and design phase, as well as the overall project goals and proposed timeline.  

During the meeting, held at the Public Safety Building, 275 U.S. Route 1, residents asked questions about the project and gave feedback.  

The Spurwink Road project will take place on Spurwink Road from Ocean Avenue to the Cape Elizabeth town line; it will encompass about two miles. The project will repave and realign the road as well add sidewalks in one section and add bike lanes. It will also address the dangerous curves and intersections and improve the road surface and other road issues.  

Due to its size, the project will be broken into two phases. The first phase is slated to begin in the spring or fall of 2023. The department wants to avoid summer construction due to increased traffic at that time. 

“The repaving project is the primary driver; as part of that we are also looking to add in pedestrian/cyclist amenities,” said Scarborough Public Works Deputy Director Stephen Buckley. “So, for phase one from Acorn Lane to Pleasant Hill, we will be putting in a sidewalk. There will be four-foot bike lanes on both sides of the road, and they will be extending the full length of that project; there will be bike lanes along the whole length.” 

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Phase two will complete the remainder of the road section from the halfway point to the Cape Elizabeth town line. The Scarborough Public Works Department will meet about this with the Town Council next year for the FY24 budget, and construction is set to start in spring of 2024. 

“There are a couple of areas (of the road) that are fairly low length; they are a couple of feet above sea level, so we are looking to raise those a little bit and get those more coastal resilient and flood resilient as well as improve some of the drainage infrastructures along that road,” said Buckley. “The final aim of the project is the intersection that is Sawyer Street and Spurwink Road; as you are pulling out of there, especially if you are turning left and going towards Cape Elizabeth, you have very little limited sight distance. It is a challenging intersection to deal with. We are hoping to bring the Spurwink Road down a little bit as you are looking right out of there, and it will give a little bit more sight distance so people can see better as they are trying to pull out of there.”

Over 50 residents attended the meeting, expressed their concerns, and supplied feedback about the project. Residents voiced concern about widening the road and concerns about the cost of the project, but many residents spoke in favor of the project. 

“Many residents spoke in favor of the issue and stated that this has been an issue for a long time,” said Buckley. “It was first identified back in 2005 as part of a transportation study that this was a corridor that was a priority for adding pedestrian and cyclist lanes. It was one of the most popular bike routes in southern Maine. There were a lot of people there last night that both live there and also use Spurwink Road for cycling, so they were very much in favor. There are a lot of areas along that road that aren’t particularly safe right now for cyclists. There is only less than a foot in shoulder in some places that people can walk along to get off the road, and cyclists have to share the road with some pretty heavy traffic that goes through there.”

For questions, contact Scarborough Public Works at [email protected] or 207-730-4400. Residents that missed the meeting can watch it on the town YouTube channel.

 

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