Work On Van Buren Streets Stretches Past Deadline, Will Affect School Traffic

A map shows the streets affected by the water line repair in Van Buren near City Heights Elementary.

VAN BUREN (KFSM) — Repairs to a leak on water lines in Van Buren by the city of Fort Smith are taking longer than expected, and it will impact traffic for a local elementary that starts classes tomorrow (Jan. 8).

The city of Fort Smith has been repairing a leak on the 48-inch Lee Creek transmission line in Van Buren since around Christmas, but was delayed. The leak repair was completed at 1:22 a.m. Monday, but the city still has to refill the hole and repair the road, according to Joshua Robertson, deputy director of Business Administration for the Fort Smith Utility Department.

The repairs will impact traffic around City Heights Elementary, which starts classes Tuesday (Jan. 8) for the spring semester.

Robertson didn’t say when work would be finished, but he said they have been working with the school, and the school is prepared to use secondary entrances until the repairs are finished.

The work was initially supposed to be completed last week. Robertson didn’t specify why the work has been delayed.

The Van Buren School District sent 5NEWS the following statement about the construction:

“Road construction is currently taking place near City Heights Elementary School. School traffic may be slightly impacted as students return to class on Tuesday, January 8. Buses will use an alternate entrance, but administrators do not anticipate any significant delays during morning drop-off or afternoon pick-up. The construction is expected to be completed early this week.”

The following streets will be affected. Drivers are advised to use caution and find alternate routes.

  • Arkansas Street from Sherwood Street to Mount Vista Boulevard will be closed
  • Sherwood Street and Arkansas Street from Sherwood Street north will accept local traffic only
  • Segar Street from Mount Vista Boulevard to Sherwood Street will be the staging area for repair equipment, trailers, trucks, etc.
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