Bowker Street was identified for a sidewalk improvement project, which was originally scheduled for 2022. Bowker St presently has about 300 ft of a narrow sidewalk along the north side of the street, then the sidewalk shifts to the south side. During field review with the contractor, issues with retrofitting sidewalk improvements were identified to the end of Pine St. The primary issues were questions of avaliable right-of-way, inadequate slopes and widths for ADA compliance, existing trees close to the sidewalk posing construction challenges, utility pole conflicts, drainage structures, and pinch points caused by other structures that have been constructed over time. The town then worked with a design consultant to prepare different concepts for how to best proceed with addressing these existing issues. The following options are being considered:
Option 1: Do Nothing Alternative - No alterations will be made to the street. The road will be milled and repaved, and spot repair work done to existing sidewalk.
Option 2: Midblock Crossing - This will consist of CMP relocating utility poles along the north side of the street, the construction of sidewalk along the north-western 300 ft portion of the street, a mid-block crosswalk, and then expanding the south side sidewalk to 5 ft.
Option 3: Southside Sidewalk - This will consist of CMP relocating utility poles along the north side of the street, the removal of existing sidewalk along the northern side of Bowker St, the shifting of the Bowker St centerline alignment near the intersection with Harpswell Rd, and the construction of a 5 ft sidewalk along the entire southern frontage of Bowker St.
The following options were at one point considered, but were not pursued for differing reasons
Option 4: Northside Sidewalk - This was rejected as the majority of the homes are on the south side of the street, so Option 3 is considered preferable for a similar overall cost
Option 5: One Way Conversion - Converting Bowker St from two directional flow to one directional flow was considered. It would have consisted of sidewalk along one side of the street, on street parking, and a bike lane. This option was not further pursued as it would cause a large redistribution of local traffic to neighboring streets.