Saugerties receives approval to replace bluestone sidewalks in village center

Sections of the bluestone sidewalks along Main and Partition streets in the village will be replaced, and unbroken sections of the bluestone, including this section on Partition Street, will be leveled. (photo by Robert Ford)

State officials have approved the village government of Saugerties going out to bid to have sections of the downtown bluestone sidewalks replaced. Work is expected to begin this fall.

And while the state has given its approval, the project promises to be a complex one, according to Alex Wade, who is in charge of special projects for the village and has shepherded this project through the entire process.

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In a written report to village trustees, Alex Wade said the state has given vague numbers as to what should be budgeted for the job, which calls for replacing crumbling pieces of the bluestone sidewalk along a portion of Partition and Main streets. The state, according to Wade has told the village to use “an average of similar projects in the region,” to gauge the price of the Saugerties job. “New York State makes the budget extremely difficult,” Wade said.

There were two such projects on file, Wade said, one at $26 a square foot and the other was $78 a square foot. “We compromised on $40 a square foot, which is very high out in the real world,” Wade wrote.

To help save some money, the project also called for replacing the crumbling bluestone curbing with tinted concrete rather than bluestone, which is more expensive.

To level existing unbroken pieces of bluestone, Wade said that workers would set the bluestone into dry-pack cement. “Considerable leveling of the walks is required to meet the absurd maximum slope requirements,” Wade writes. “I guess the federal folks who made the regulations grew up in Kansas.”

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