By Jeffery Smith

CORNING | City crews and contractors are nearing the end of another busy season of city street and alley improvements.

“We have a few more streets left to pave this season, but overall paving operations have gone well,” said City Superintendent of Public Works Larry Wagner. “They’ll likely be done in the next two weeks, weather permitting.”

Crews are currently working to finish in-house paving to upgrade an ailing section of Buffalo Street, before moving to complete upgrades on a couple other city streets. The total cost of city street and alley upgrades this season is expected to be about $1.1 million.

“We have made tremendous progress during the past five years,” said City Manager Mark Ryckman. “The streets are getting much better.”

Mayor Rich Negri said he has heard nothing but positive things about the ongoing street improvements from city residents.

“I am very supportive of the street paving strategy,” Negri said. “The additional funding we have added to the budget each year is making a big difference.”

Ryckman said the city is currently focusing on mill and overlay work rather than street reconstruction.

The City Council has added an additional $100,000 to the city budget annually earmarked for road repairs which has allowed the city to make progress.

In 2012, the city adopted a $31 million, 14-year street maintenance plan that would increase taxes 2 percent annually, to upgrade ailing city streets.

City crew work included Florentia Lane from Chemung to Cedar, Florentia Lane from Walnut to State, Engraved Lane from State to Washington, Erie Lane from Reynolds to Princeton, Chateau Thierry Lane from Pershing to Argonne, Vintage Lane from Hazel to Perry, and Blossburg Lane from Flint to Dodge.

The crews are also nearing the completion of crack sealing at several city streets and alleys.