NOLANVILLE — Sitting on a porch with several neighbors along Eighth Street, Adam Dunn said it should not take him 20 minutes to get out of Nolanville.
A resident who works in Pflugerville, Dunn said his car is consistently covered in dirt because of the sluggish Avenue H road project, and with the way the city diverted traffic, he’s been caught behind the train more often than he’d like.
“I told the city guys, this is getting ridiculous, I work at 7 in the morning every day, and between fighting the train tracks and not allowing us out of town (with the construction) ... it’s ridiculous,” said Dunn, who explained he wished the city had torn up only one side of Avenue H at a time, or worked the entire project faster.
Residents’ patience was tried Wednesday when weekend downpours pooled onto Avenue H. Due to the project contractor’s lack of drainage infrastructure, Eighth Street homeowners were greeted with impromptu koi-fish-sized ponds of rainwater, which made driving vehicles in or out of the street impossible.
“This is really such poor planning on (the city and the contractor’s) part ... this morning I couldn’t get out at all,” Jeri Vick, a homeowner along Eighth Street, said while sitting on the porch with others.
Avenue H is currently a dirt road that construction workers dug several feet below driveway level to lay street foundation.
The nearly $1 million project, which began in January, had several delays in recent months when the contractor, Lone Star Grading and Materials, ran into unexpected water and utilities lines.
“(The lines) have to be relocated so they are not in conflict with the project,” City Manager Stephen Pearl said.
Pearl said the run-ins with utility lines delayed the project by one month. A lack of drainage infrastructure added to the flooding problems, he said. The two very large puddles that blocked Eighth Street passage were due to contractors digging around a water pipe that needed to be moved.
“As soon as we were notified of the problem, we got on the phone with the contractors and the engineers to get it resolved. ... We have to provide access at all times to residents,” Pearl said.
Pearl said he understands the inconvenience is inexcusable and is working to get contractors to fix the problem quickly.