Lynchburg's Main Street Renewal Project less than two weeks away

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7)-- Work is set to begin on the highly anticipated Main Street Renewal Project on September 16th.

Work is set to begin on the Main Street Renewal Project on September 16th.

The two-year-long project was announced more than one year ago. Appalachian Power and the City of Lynchburg are teaming up to replace the city's decades-old electrical and water systems on Main St.

"The water lines are about 100 years old. The electric system is about 80 years old. They have both reached the end of their productive lives," explained Jim Talian, Project Manager. "In order to maintain their dependability, they both have to be replaced."

Work will begin on Monday, September 16th. The city has contracted English Construction to work alongside Appalachian Power. Utility work will begin in the 800 block and sidewalk work will be simultaneously completed in the 1000 block of Main St.

According to a press release from the city, parking decks and lots will remain open. The release also said that during sidewalk and street work, pedestrian fencing will be installed for safety allowing access to all storefronts.

Talian told WDBJ7 that since the project needs to happen, the focus is now about making sure the process is as welcoming and convenient as possible.

"We have a business liaison person dedicated to the project," said Talian. "We have been to every business in downtown."

The Downtown Lynchburg Association has also been working with the city. They are planning on putting public art work up along construction fences as another incentive to invite people downtown.

"I have faith that people will continue to come down here and they won't let a little dirt scare them from coming and enjoying downtown as we move forward," said Ashley Kershner, Executive Director of the DLA.

City crews ask for drivers to be patient and obey all traffic signs as detours begin to take place.