Flint, MI — Crews on downtown Flint’s ongoing Saginaw Street brick restoration project have hit a bump in the road.

This week, bricks laid during the project’s first phase of work were pulled up and repalletized after the construction team noticed the bricks “shifting” between Court and Third Streets, Flint’s City Engineer, Mark Adas explained.

“We evaluated the situation and determined the shifting was the result of an issue with the material being used to bed and lock the bricks,” Adas said in an emailed statement. “It was determined that the bricks should be removed and re-installed using a polymer sand to prevent the shifting.”

Adas did not respond to Flint Beat’s request to know what material had originally been used to re-install the historic bricks, but he did share that construction crews caught the concern ahead of the current phase of restoration work happening up the road.

“Fortunately, the issue was identified early enough that the bricks in other areas were installed using the polymer sand and will not need to be removed,” he said.

Currently, Saginaw Street between Court Street and Fourth Street is closed for brick reinstallation. Saginaw’s 700 block, from Fourth to Third Streets, is to follow.

Adas said it’s estimated that each block will take roughly three weeks to redo.

“We did not expect to encounter this challenge, but we are working to resolve it as quickly and effectively as possible so that Flint can get back to enjoying a vibrant downtown,” he said.

Work on Saginaw Street began in April 2023. The project includes restoring the roadway’s bricks, making sidewalk improvements, replacing intersections with stamped pavement and upgrading the water main below the road from Court Street to Riverbank Park.

The project is estimated to wrap up in fall of 2024, according to the city’s progress tracking website.

Kate is Flint Beat's associate editor. She joined the team as a corps member of Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues....

2 replies on “Flint’s Saginaw Street restoration project hits a road block”

  1. This is Not the fault of the contractor – the specifications were wrong and the specs were done by Wade Trim. They in turn had hired a company to design the bricks portion of the project. I’m sure Wade Trim will be suing that company to recover the additional costs. The contractor laid the bricks exactly the way they were told.

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