March 07, 2001 11:00 pm

By The Observer

Motorists using Cove Avenue in La Grande will have to endure the rough road a little longer, City Engineering Superintendent Norm Paullus said.

The $1.39 million Cove Avenue and Albany Street improvement project, which will make Cove Avenue 36 feet wide, wont be completed until November, Paullus said. The previous expected completion date was June 30.

Delays have been caused by a number of things, none major, Paullus said. It has taken more time than expected to get some high-powered electric poles moved back. There have been a few other issues, such as having trenches settle, he said.

The road is not blocked off, as it was previously during part of the work, but it is extremely rough in places, where crews are working on relocating underground sewer and water lines.

The Cove Avenue part of the job involves 1,700 lineal feet, the Albany Street work 1,000 feet. It will include two bike lanes, two planting strips with trees and sidewalks on both sides.

Albany Street is being improved from Island Avenue (the McDonalds intersection) to Cove Avenue (The Rock Bowling Center), with two travel lanes on a 32-foot-wide street, sidewalks on both sides (except for the loading area behind the Town Center shopping center).

The project is paid for out of grants from the Oregon Department of Transportation, and $234,159 from the La Grande street user fee fund collected monthly with city water bills.