Half of Riverside’s longest street and one of its shortest will be repaved this summer as part of the village’s 2011 roadway improvement program.

Included on this year’s construction schedule are North Delaplaine Road, from Desplaines Avenue to Longcommon Road; Northwood Road, between Delaplaine and Bartram roads; Blythe Road; and Miller Road.

The approximately $370,000 project is being funded primarily by motor fuel tax dollars, which are distributed to municipalities annually, based on population.

The improvement to Miller Road, the short street connecting Riverside Road to Ogden Avenue, is coming courtesy of a $40,000 grant through the state’s Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, awarded to Riverside as part of the state’s 2009 capital projects bill.

Repairs to Blythe Road, which curves gently eastward from the confluence of Eastgrove and Delaplaine roads to Shenstone Road, are being funded through the village’s non-home rule sales tax. The non-home rule sales tax was approved by Riverside voters in 2006 to specifically fund infrastructure improvements.

The Blythe Road resurfacing will likely get started sooner than the others, since the work will not require sign-off by the Illinois Department of Transportation, said Public Works Director Ed Bailey.

The improvements using state motor fuel tax and grant money will need IDOT sign-off. However, as of Monday, there were still no firm start dates for any of the work.

While it will look to residents like one big road improvement project, the 2011 program will be completed by two different contractors, whose bids were accepted by the village board in May.

Delaplaine, Northwood and Miller roads will be resurfaced by Brothers Asphalt, whose bid of $298,276 was almost 20 percent below the village engineer’s estimate for the work.

Blythe Road, meanwhile, will be repaired by Schroeder Asphalt, whose bid of $171,283 was the lowest for that portion of the 2011 program.

Work will include milling off the old asphalt surface and laying a new one. There may be some minor curb and driveway apron repairs and drainage structure improvements, but none of the roads will be completely reconstructed.

North Riverside road resurfacing in June

In North Riverside, two streets will be repaved, courtesy of a $90,000 grant secured for the village by former state Rep. Bob Biggins (R-41st) before he retired last fall.

A pair of “rural” roads – 27th and 28th streets – which run west from Desplaines Avenue, will be milled and resurfaced later this month, said Village Administrator Guy Belmonte.

“They should be done by the end of the month,” Belmonte said.

The resurfacing project is a simple one in both cases. Both are narrower-than-typical village streets and neither has curbs, gutters or drainage structures or needs to be striped.

North Riverside has held off resurfacing 28th Street for a few years, after waiting to see if the Scottish Home moved forward with a planned expansion, floated in 2008. Had the expansion moved forward, said Belmonte, the village would have sought to widen 28th Street.

According to Belmonte, the street was ceded to North Riverside by Cook County many years ago. Part of the deal, he said, was a provision requiring the roadway to remain “rural,” i.e. without curbs and gutters, as it leads into a forested area.

As for 27th Street, which is bordered on the south by both forest preserve land and the Scottish Home, that roadway is actually owned by the homeowners on the block.

According to Belmonte, homeowners’ south lot line runs all the way to the forest preserve/Scottish Home property to the south. A deal back in the 1950s that brought a water main underneath the roadway required the village to maintain the street above it, said Belmonte.

Homeowners have occasionally used their private property rights to control traffic on the street. In 1996, one household successfully sued the village and Scottish Home to win an agreement from the home to shut its rear gate. Employees would use the gate and exit the area through 27th Street, increasing traffic on the street.