O and P Streets Project Completed; Sept. 18 Ceremony Planned

Workmen at O and Potomac Streets pressed down the last stones for the O and P Street Rehabilitation Project which began two years ago this September. Depending on Mayor Gray’s schedule, a ribbon-cutting ceremony is tentatively set for Sept. 18, 10 a.m., to celebrate the completion of the work, which inconvenienced residents of O and P Streets for a time. The project closed streets and sidewalks, caused noise and took away parking spaces. All of this is nearly over.

O Street and P Street, west of Wisconsin Avenue to 35th Street, are the last spots in Washington where tracks from the city’s trolley system can be seen. These tracks and street stones have been refitted or replaced, along with street lamps and other curb work. The decision was made to preserve the streets as they were to maintain the historic look of Georgetown. Sett stones were used instead of the original cobble stones which had moved or drifted along the surface of the street, making driving difficult for some.

There is some more work to do. The project’s website—FixingOandPStreets.com—answered about some of the remaining work:

What is the blue/gray dust left on the roadway? Does it serve a purpose?
The blue/gray dust material left on the roadway does indeed serve a purpose. This dust continues the process of filling the gaps between pavers, as the initial filling settles. In this final stage, the dust is repeatedly swept over the area, wet down and swept over again after it dries. This material will be swept off the roadway once it is determined that gaps have been adequately filled. This process also applies to the brick sidewalks.

How about the grout for pavers and the rails?
The area between the rail track and the granite pavers must be filled in with an elastomeric grout. This is needed due to how each of these very different materials behaves under various weather conditions and other physical processes. Temperature and moisture greatly impact how the grout pours and cures. Ideally, the temperature should be between 70 degrees and 80 degrees, with no rain for 12 to 24 hours.

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