Wheeling Rotary Hears Plans for Streetscape

Gabe Hays, director at the Wallace Pancher Group in St. Clairsville, and Charlie Swart, design engineer with District 6 for the West Virginia Department of Transportation, speak to the Wheeling Rotary Tuesday at River City Restaurant in Wheeling.

WHEELING – A $30 million streetscape project for downtown Wheeling could go out to bid by the end of 2020, according to Gabe Hays, director at the Wallace-Pancher Group in St. Clairsville.

Hays and Charlie Swart, design engineer with District 6 for the West Virginia Department of Transportation, gave Wheeling Rotary members a sneak peak at the design during Tuesday’s Rotary meeting at River City Restaurant.

They announced their goal is to bundle the project with a second state-funded streetscape project set for Charleston, and have the projects bid out by the end of this year.

If all goes as planned, preliminary work could begin as soon as next spring, they said.

Gov. Jim Justice announced last month the state was committing $25 million toward the city of Wheeling’s long-awaited Downtown Streetscape Project.

In addition, the city of Wheeling will add additional dollars to do necessary storm sewer separation as part of the project, bringing the estimated cost for the total streetscape to about $30 million, Hays said.

The plan includes a rerouting of Nailers Way through the WesBanco Arena parking lot, where it will veer to connect with the intersection at 16th and Main Streets.

Additional benches and trash receptacles will be placed along Wheeling streets.

“Planters, trees, brick landscaping — that is what you are going to see going down the street,” Hays said. “However, at the intersections it is going to be something different.”

To meet federal requirements, plans for stormwater runoff must be considered in the plan. Landscaping being placed along the streets will assist with that, and walks at the intersection of 12th and Main streets will be curved to promote better drainage, according to Hays.

The plan also is set to include “historical interpretation design,” with markers being place near the current River’s Edge Restaurant on Main Street to note the original site of Fort Henry.

The Wheeling Rotary meeting Tuesday was its first since the start of the coronavirus in mid-March. Typically, the Rotary meets at WesBanco Arena, which is presently closed until Aug. 15.

The meeting also was the first for new Wheeling Rotary President Desiree Lyonette.


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