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Portion of Fore St to be one-way traffic through Dec. due to ongoing Portland sewer project

Mountfort Street to St. Lawrence Street will be converted to one-way flow from Aug. 16 to Jan. 1, the city said

PORTLAND, Maine — Editor's Note: The video above aired in August 2020.

A portion of Fore Street in the area of the Eastern Promenade will be converted to one-way traffic for nearly five months as the city of Portland continues its extensive storm drain and sewer separation project.

Starting on Aug. 16, traffic on Fore Street between Mountfort Street to St. Lawrence Street will be one-way only. The city said Fore Street and Eastern Promenade will remain open to eastbound traffic in the direction of the Eastern Prom throughout the project, which is scheduled to last until Jan. 1, 2022.

The city’s contractor, Gorham Sand and Gravel, will start construction on Fore Street as part of the city’s sewer separation project. Work will be underway Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and the one-way traffic pattern will be in place 24 hours a day, seven days a week until the project is completed.

Westbound traffic routing towards the Old Port and Downtown Portland will be directed to the specified detour route starting at St. Lawrence Street, or drivers will be asked to seek an alternate route around the work zone. The city strongly recommends that motorists exiting the Eastern Promenade area use Congress Street or another route to avoid the construction zone.

RELATED: Huge construction project will help prevent combined sewage overflow (CSO) from going into Back Cove and Portland Harbor

The nearly $4 million project will install a new stormwater drainage system under Fore Street and Eastern Promenade. Project engineer Justin Pellerin explained in a letter to area residents that the current sewer system is combined, meaning both wastewater and stormwater flows in the drainage system. During high-intensity rainstorms, the flow capacity is exceeded, he said.

The project will remove a significant amount of stormwater out of the combined system. Pellerin said the project will also include improving pedestrian crosswalks and ramps to be in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Construction in the Eastern Promenade area is in addition to several other major areas in Portland where construction of the sewer separation project is underway. Significantly, Baxter Boulevard from Payson Park to Vannah Ave. has been closed since June and will remain closed during the first phase of the project for the next three months. Construction on Baxter Boulevard will continue through 2022.

RELATED: Corridor opponents ask DEP to stop construction after court ruling