Public works preview: Latimer Square lane closures, Hopewell contract, Rita’s Italian Ice walkup

Motorists and pedestrians who are navigating north and south on either side of the Latimer Square apartment complex, which is now under construction at the site of the former Kmart off East 3rd Street, will notice some lane closures in the coming weeks.

That’s assuming Bloomington’s board of public works grants the requests from Gilliatte General Contractors, which is doing the construction work. The lane closure requests appear on the board’s Tuesday agenda.

The builder wants to close some lanes on Kingston Drive which runs north-south along the western side of the 900-bed apartment project, and Clarizz Boulevard, which runs north-south along the eastern side.

Closing down some traffic lanes and sidewalks will allow the improvements to the sidewalks and construction of bicycle lanes that are a part of the project site plan.

From 3rd Street down to the southern end of the project, Clarizz currently has two lanes of traffic in each direction, separated by a median. The construction plans call for the use of one existing southbound lane as a protected bicycle lane.

The apartment complex was scheduled to open in fall of this year. The work on the Kingston Drive side of the project is scheduled for June 26 to July 28. The work on the Clarizz side is scheduled from May 29 to July 7.

Also appearing on the board’s Tuesday agenda is the approval of a $13.37 million contract with Milestone Contractors, LP for the Hopewell Phase I East Infrastructure Project. That’s a major infrastructure project at the site of the former IU Health hospital, now known as the Hopewell neighborhood.

The area for the project is bounded by 2nd Street to the north, 1st Street to the south, The B-Line Trail to the east, and Rogers Street to the west. It’s called Phase 1 East in the master plan for the development of the site.

The demolition phase for Phase 1 East is complete. The contract with Milestone is for installing utilities, constructing streets, landscaping and bicycle-pedestrian facilities.

The $13.37 million figure includes the base bid plus the alternates. The original $13.5 million base bid, from Milestone Contractors, was the only one received by the city. It was about 30 percent higher than the engineer’s estimate. That led the city in January to reject the bid, revise the project and to put it out to bids a second time.

This time around, the city received two bids—the winning one from Milestone, and a $15.94 million bid from Crider & Crider, Inc.

Also on the board’s Tuesday agenda is a right-of-way encroachment request from Rita’s Italian Ice for a walk-up window. The window would to serve customers out of the space off Dunn Street at Dunkirk Square, at the intersection of Kirkwood and Dunn. It’s the space where the former Falafel’s was located.

The request from Rita’s is not guaranteed to have staff support, director of public works Adam Wason told the board at its Monday noon agenda preview. There’s concern about the safety for customers lined up along the Dunn Street sidewalk. Wason also said the staff’s thinking is that the interior of the Dunkirk Square complex would be a better location for a walk-up window.

Wason put it like this: “You’ve got a lot of internal connecting hallways to Dunkirk Square there and…that might be the ideal location for the walk up window.” Wason added, “We will continue to explore some things here, but I don’t know that you’ll have a positive staff recommendation on this one.”

[Updated at 6:58 a.m. May 24, 2023: The board put off a vote on the Rita’s Italian Ice request until its next meeting in two weeks.]

This is an August 2018 Google Street View looking northwest from Dunn Street.

3 thoughts on “Public works preview: Latimer Square lane closures, Hopewell contract, Rita’s Italian Ice walkup

  1. I remember when the K mart was built and he was a district manager of the automotive department. Now it’s all a four story complex with outside decks on every level.How much money will the city receive from the multi million dollar building project. How much property taxes will the city collect. I’ve worked construction all my life but will be a very expensive place to live and still looks like a four story turd on that none of the locals could live there.

  2. There are locals who can afford it and are signing up

  3. Ms. Wanzer, I’m sure as a member of the Housing Authority you’re very positive on the project, but what are locals really signing up for? Unfortunately, smaller developments in contested annexation zones are being blocked from getting water/sewage while Bloomington continues to develop more and more properties that will consume infinitely more resources including water, traffic lanes, and unencumbered views. Most of the modern student housing blocks in Bloomington are filled with unleased commercial space that make Bloomington look like it’s slowly failing. It’s pretty obvious that no matter how progressive the talk is, real estate cash is what fuels policy in Bloomington.

Comments are closed.