Today's image is titled What season is it in Madison? and was photographed by Angela Richardson.
"Spring?" asks the photographer. "Nope... construction season, of course."
This photo shows the opening of Phase IV of the reconstruction of State Street, the final stage of a project that started on its first block back in the summer of 2004. Over the subsequent two summers, the next three blocks were renovated, with a break in construction last year. As described by the city: "The reconstruction of State Street is a complete reconstruction project, including roadway and utility infrastructure, streetscape, lighting and district identity."
Downtown alder Eli Judge recently addressed this final round of disruption on the busy pedestrian and transit thoroughfare, with fencing and other initial preparations already narrowing the sidewalks on the two blocks closest to the UW-Madison campus. He writes:
The project will be completed around September 12th of this year. The project will include street and curb improvements, lighting upgrades, trees that will replace the ones removed during construction, an overhaul of "Concrete Park" (the space between Statesider and Towers private residence halls), the installation of a public art piece in the space between State St. Brats and University Inn, and, finally, bike-rack improvements. In essence, this stage of State St. construction is the continuation of what was done to the first four blocks two years ago.
For your reference, the plans of the project, compliments of the City Engineering division, can be found here.
While this round of downtown construction will certainly be disruptive to the student population and downtown business in general, completing the final stage of this necessary project over the summer, when students, for the most part, will be elsewhere, is best should we hope to keep its impact to a minimum.
This is the surest sign yet that summer is rapidly nearing.
This is the latest entry of Madison Snaps: photos of Madison-area events and locations. The Isthmus group photo pool is the primary source for Madison Snaps, which are published here with the permission of individual contributors. If you are interested in having your photo eligible for Madison Snaps, please respond to the posting on the Flickr group page, or send a message. There is no compensation for Madison Snaps photos, which are © to the respective photographers.