Joshua Morrison/ News Steel plates were placed over three excavations on South Main Street, between Gambier Street and Ohio Avenue on Friday to open the road temporarily as an alternate route for traffic on Gay Street during the Memorial Day parade. However, the city decided the plates are not stable enough for truck traffic, so the road will remain closed.

MOUNT VERNON — South Main Street between Ohio and Gambier will remain closed during the Memorial Day parade, but should be open again in time for the June First Fridays event.

The street has been closed longer than expected for paving and installation of new water taps. The city considered opening it temporarily as an alternate route for South Gay Street, which will be closed Monday for about an hour for the Memorial Day parade. Heavy steel plates were placed over excavations in the street to allow for traffic to come through, but it was determined that the plates are not stable enough to handle heavy trucks, City Engineer Brian Ball said.

So, the street will remain closed and the plates will sit until work resumes on Tuesday.

During the parade, north and west traffic on Ohio 13 will be rerouted from South Gay to West Gambier Street, over to South Main and to the square.

The project was supposed to wrap Friday, but has run into a few problems. The project has “a very optimistic” completion date of May 31, Ball said, which is a week before the June First Fridays.

The city decided to put in new water taps while the street was being dug up. Three new 4-inch taps will be installed, serving 21 customers.

The taps were needed in part for the Downtown Loft Project, which is installing high-end upstairs apartments above several storefronts. The 4-inch taps are needed to provide water sufficient for fire suppression systems, Ball said.

The city installs the taps. The customers pay for installation of water lines from there to the buildings.

Ball further reported that a paving project on South Main Street from Newark Road to Granville Road started Friday with milling of the road surface. As part of the project, Kirk Street will also be paved.

Streets

Street Superintendent Tom Hinkle reported that a crosswalk signal at the corner of Main Street and Ohio Avenue damaged by a truck has been replaced using an old unit that the city had on hand. Rather than yellow, the signals are black, and Hinkle said the signal will eventually be replaced with a new unit, hopefully in yellow.

Hinkle said signage for Memorial Day restricted parking on High Street has been put up. Parking will be restricted from 7 a.m. to noon Monday for the parade.

The streets department had to take a break from pothole patching for two projects elsewhere this week. One was getting the drive to Hiawatha pool ready for opening day. The other was a water dig on Nuce Street that used four tons of asphalt, Hinkle said.

Patching is ongoing in the east end of town.

Utilities

Some sanitary sewer lines are being cleared of gravel after camera runs through the pipes by a gas company working in the area of Pleasant, Hamtramck and Burgess streets found obstructions, Utilities Director Mathias Orndorf said. The gas company is required to run cameras through the lines before and after they do work to check for damages to the lines.

Orndorf said his department has started its mowing schedule for summer.

Mayor

Mayor Richard Mavis had two unusual incidents to report involving city vehicles.

A 2010 Chevy truck was reported stolen Thursday at approximately 3 p.m. from Public Square.

The truck has the city logo on the door and contained tools and equipment.

According to Mount Vernon Police reports, two city workers using the truck had last seen it at 2 p.m. while they were working at Public Square. The truck went missing after they went back to city offices to get more tools.

The keys were left inside the truck. As of Friday afternoon, the truck has not been located.

A truck outfitted as a tree-watering unit was damaged in a three vehicle crash that occurred Wednesday on Mount Vernon Avenue. According to MVPD reports, the watering truck was stopped for stalled traffic when a semi truck came around the corner from Newark Road.

The semi rear-ended a vehicle behind the city truck, which was pushed into the back of the city truck.

The driver of the semi, Edward E. Hunter Jr., 48, Mount Vernon, was cited for assured clear distance.

A damage estimate to the city vehicle is still being assessed, Mavis said.

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Nick Sabo: 740-397-5333 or nsabo@mountvernonnews.com and on Twitter, @twitter.com/mountvernonnews