Repaving project brings facelift to Kenly streets

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KENLY — Several streets that were in dire need of repairs have a new look and feel following a repaving project that began May 21 and wrapped up Friday.

Kenly Town Manager Michael Douglas said the streets in the worst shape that required the most paving and repairs were Maple Street, First Street, Grady Street and Gardner Street followed by Seventh Street, Sixth Street and St. Mary’s Church Road.

Douglas said work on all these streets has been completed and each has been reopened to traffic.

Smithfield-based Selco Construction Inc. was the project’s general contractor.

Douglas said Powell Bill funds footed the bill for the $118,000 repaving project, which required no tax or fee increases for Kenly residents. The Powell Bill is a state law passed in 1951 that provides annual appropriations for cities and towns to maintain streets and roads. Municipalities receive a share of Powell Bill funds based on the length of city- or town-maintained roads.

Kenly has 13 miles of roads and receives $42,000 in annual Powell Bill funds, Douglas explained.

The paving project involved two processes. Some of the flawed areas were removed through saw-cutting, meaning segments of road were removed in individual chunks. The other process was milling and involved grinding up an entire section of the road.

Douglas said milling is more involved and is thus more expensive.

Once both those segments of work were completed, contractors and applied a 2-inch-thick base of asphalt.

Douglas said there had been no problems encountered during the project other than one mailbox being damaged.

According to Douglas, more paving repairs in Kenly will be addressed soon, although they will fall under the fiscal year 2019-20 budget that takes effect July 1.

“The paving work that was done so far represents everything that was allocated in this year’s budget,” said Douglas.

Douglas said since the paving project began. he’s heard some grateful residents say Kenly is looking better.

“People came out of their houses to watch the paving being done and to say thank you,” said Douglas. “I am happy the residents now have roads where they will not have to worry about avoiding potholes.”

The road work completed last week is supposed to last for a minimum of 15 years.