Construction Work Could Better Beck Street

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One street that has unfortunately developed a bad reputation for crime has seen some good news two decades in the making.

For the last three months, construction crews have been busy with the extension of Beck Street, one that will take the road all the way out to 2818.

"The actual, total project length is just over a mile, and that includes the existing rehab part of the road," said Paul Kaspar, assistant city engineer for Bryan.

For the next year-and-a-half, construction workers will be carving and constructing a path for the existing Beck Street to meet up with Harvey Mitchell Parkway, with Suncrest Street also extending south across the new Beck. Those roads will serve some big purposes, including providing another option to get to nearby Jane Long Middle School. But this project, approved by the voters back in the 1980s, has another goal.

"It's certainly costing a lot more than it would have back in the 80s to build," Kaspar said, "but it provides a nice east-west corridor to connect traffic to the downtown area."

The cost of the project is around $7.6 million.

And to build their road, they needed just a little bit of dirt, and where they found some, they were able to accomplish a few other goals. First off, they were able to build a new detention pond for the area. And when it's not being used to take on drainage, it will be there for area youths to play soccer on some very green fields.

"It's advantageous because we get a good detention pond that's maintained well," Kaspar said. "Soccer fields get maintained by our park's department, so we get a good playing surface as well."

The work is due to be done in January of 2008. Everything from businesses to residences may spring up along this new road, but that's all up in the air. What's down on the ground is a lot of work, especially for a city road.

"We don't build a lot of roadways in Bryan," Kaspar said. "Most of it's maintaining the roadways. Developers typically build them for us, so this is a fun project for us."

And as Beck Street gets some major work done on it, the place it leads to is a few months away from work of its own. Phase 2 of the Downtown Bryan renovations are set to begin in the next few months.