Construction vehicles work on a York Beach connector road, off Route 1 near York's Wild Kingdom, in this September 2018 file photo. Credit: Rich Beauchesne | The York Weekly

YORK, Maine — The long anticipated Short Sands Road connecting Route 1 to York Beach may not be open this summer, Public Works Director Dean Lessard told selectmen on Monday, because of some delays by the Department of Transportation in approving the town’s plans.

Lessard said one item was still left before the state signs off on the project, and until that is done, the project can’t be put out to bid.

“I’m getting discouraged,” he told them.

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The design of the intersection with Route 1 has been with the MDOT, which has been reviewing the plans. The project is under the purview of the DOT, but it has given permission for the town to administer it.

Still, the department needs to approve all decisions.

And the DOT has not signed off completely, Steve Bradstreet of Ransom Consulting, the town’s consulting engineers, told Lessard last week. “I’m hoping that is going to occur very soon,” Lessard said.

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“If we don’t get this soon, does that mean we have to delay to the fall?” asked Selectman Mike Estes.

Lessard equivocated a bit, saying that a lot of work is going “to occur in areas where vehicles aren’t traveling, and we can deal with a lane closure.” He said he’s asking the engineers to “look into a temporary signal to get that road open.” A permanent traffic signal is not likely right now, due to problems securing steel.

Robert said, “So it may not open.”

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“It’s already March,” said Lessard. “I wanted that out to bid by now.”

Further, he said, all of the projects in the region that have already been bid out have come out significantly higher than expected, he said. “Fortunately,” he said, the road is actually completed right up to the intersection.

“All you can do is what you’re doing,” said board chairman Todd Frederick “Just keep pushing.”