State and city to share millions in utility costs for proposed Route 82 roundabouts

Among the many concerns voiced by Norwich Mayor Peter Nystrom, a staunch opponent of the project, was the potential cost of upgrading underground Norwich Public Utilities water, sewer and natural gas lines. The reconstruction project runs 1.3 miles from an area west of the New London Turnpike intersection to Fairmount Street, with six proposed roundabouts, a median divider and single lanes of traffic in each direction. While the DOT would be responsible for the entire cost of relocating all current Norwich utility infrastructure that are impacted by the work, the city would pay for additional work such as placing electrical lines underground or replacing old water and sewer lines that could be damaged by the project. According to a financial report compiled by city Comptroller Josh Pothier, moving the lines underground would cost an estimated $10.6 million, while relocating lines above ground was estimated at $2.8 million, putting the city utility’s cost at $7.8 million if the city chooses that option.

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