It may get a little noisy at night
Hotel reps worry construction work will disturb guests


July 16, 2015

HARTFORD — Despite objections from city hotel and motel owners, Hartford aldermen decided to allow overnight work on municipal construction projects.

According to the revised ordinance, the city engineer and police chief must approve work between 6 p.m-6 a.m.

City Engineer Jason Schall said the contractor for a Highway 60 reconstruction project wants to complete milling and resurfacing at night.

“He said overnight work will be safer for the public and his workers because there will be less traffic,” Schall said. “They also believe they can have a higher quality surface put in place with fewer interruptions.”

Two representatives of hotels along the construction route strongly objected to the change, saying the overnight work would be noisy and would distract their customers trying to sleep.

“We’ve got 800 potential customers that would have to listen to the noise. It would disturb our guests,” said George Miller of the AmericInn. “They don’t expect to have to listen to construction noise all night.”

Local Super 8 Motel owner Chandra Patel also objected to the change.

“It will hurt our summer business,” Patel said. “This is our busiest time of the year, which helps us make up for the slower periods.”

But local George Webb franchise owner Dan Miller supported the change.

“Our business is down since the start of the construction by about 13 percent,” Miller said. “We still will have another three-and-a-half more months of this ahead. If working at night will speed up the work and have it get done quicker, I’m for it.”

Schall said the project’s contractor told him the paving work would usually take about 36 days.

“If they can work overnight they can cut that time frame in half to about 18 days,” Schall said.

As part of the project, only the portion of the road from near the hospital to the east will be milled away and replaced with an asphalt surface. Any of the project west of the hospital will receive a new concrete surface. Aldermen estimate the equipment would only be in one area for an hour to an hour-and-a-half.

Alderman Roger Randolph offered an amendment that would require permission for the overnight work to come from the council’s Public Works Committee. The effort was defeated, but Schall assured Randolph he would talk to the contractor about trying to do as little of the “noisy” milling work at night.

“We want the most longevity we can get with this new road surface,” said Alderman Dennis Hegy. “We want to get the work done as quickly as possible with the best possible surface. We also want the public and workers to be as safe as possible.”

Aldermen agreed that despite the change, there will be few contractors that will need or will request working overnight.

“The work is not large enough for other projects for them to need to work overnight,” Schall said.

Reach reporter Joe VanDeLaarschot at .