Even though the end result means worthwhile improvement, drivers very often don't like having to endure construction projects. I'm especially perturbed when I run into one on vacation and don't know the work-around that some locals do. Well get ready, because there's another project about to start in Great Barrington.

Starting next Monday, July 30, the Great Barrington Fire District will begin construction to replace the existing water main on Route 7 and 23 between the St.James Place intersection and the cross-country line from the Green River pump station on Maple Avenue (Route 23/41). They'll be replacing the existing 6,600 linear feet of water main with a new 12-inch diameter main, including paving and restoration of areas disturbed by construction. This one's going to take a while too, with work expected to continue into mid-December. All of this is meant to improve water service quality and long-term reliability, which is great news for locals at least but probably not so impressive to our visitors who run into the road work.

Work hours are scheduled from 7 A.M. to 5 P.M. Monday through Friday. The District says that since most of the work will occur in the road, there may be traffic disruptions that cause one lane on Route 7 and 23 to be temporarily closed. Alternating one-way traffic will be maintained as well as emergency vehicle access.   Access for local property owners and residents will be maintained at all times. The rest of us would probably do best to detour around, if possible.

The Great Barrington Fire District stands ready to answer any questions you might have at (413) 528-0133.