Biddeford officials say a major road construction project will close streets and affect downtown traffic starting this week.

The work on Lincoln Street in the heart of the city’s downtown is being done in preparation for the upcoming $40 million redevelopment of the Lincoln Mill.

The Lincoln Street reconstruction project will include removing old pavement, raising the elevation of the road and repaving the street. New granite curbing and sidewalks will be installed on both sides of the street, along with underground utility conduits, new sewer piping and LED streetlights. The city has allocated $1.36 million for the project.

Lincoln Street runs between Main Street and Route 1.

The updates to Lincoln Street are required as part of a joint development agreement reached between the city and LHL Holdings LLC, the corporation that will redevelop Lincoln Mill. The city has already removed old sidewalks, fixed a granite wall and installed underground utility conduits as part of the agreement.

The Lincoln Hotel and Lofts project proposed by LHL Holdings and developer Tim Harrington will convert the former textile mill into 181 housing units, a restaurant and a fitness center. The project will include a rooftop pool. Since Harrington acquired the mill in 2014 and announced plans for its redevelopment, city officials have used his investment as an example of the city’s turnaround since the removal of the Maine Energy Recovery Co. trash incinerator from the adjoining property.

“With this kind of major project coming into the downtown, these improvements become a necessity,” City Manager Jim Bennett said in a statement. “We can’t have this $40 million revitalization project come into our community without the proper infrastructure in place to support it.”

City officials warned residents to expect delays and slower traffic throughout construction, which will continue through mid-November. Businesses will remain open even when sections of road are closed.

Tom Milligan, the city’s engineer, said Lincoln Street will be closed from Main Street to Pearl Street during the repaving.

“We’ll have plenty of signs up to make sure that these detours are clear,” he said.

City officials plan to post regular updates about the road construction project on the city website.

Gillian Graham can be contacted at 791-6315 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: grahamgillian

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