Cherry Street closed to vehicular traffic during sewer line repair

Fred McCormick
Black Mountain News

Cherry Street closed to vehicular traffic for the next few weeks after the Metropolitan Sewerage District of Buncombe County began replacing sewer lines on April 9. 

The Metropolitan Sewerage District of Buncombe County closed Cherry Street to vehicular traffic April 9 to allow crews to replace sewer lines under the road.

Businesses along the street, which is in the heart of Black Mountain's downtown business district, will remain open while the work is being completed. Cherry Street will remain accessible to pedestrians. 

Crews contracted by the MSD began work downtown on Jan. 11, replacing sewage lines under Sutton and South Ridgeway Avenues and Richardson Boulevard. Most recently, Broadway Avenue was closed off and on while crews cut into the busy road to replace old lines underneath. 

The technique used to remove and replace the aging lines, pipe bursting, involves a boring instrument that bursts the lines from the inside while dragging new ones into place.

Jamey Matthews, Black Mountain's public services director, said it's difficult to say exactly how long the work on Cherry Street will take. Too many unknowns make it impossible to estimate anything more specific than a few weeks, he said. 

"Any time you're doing work like that you can't put an exact time on it," Matthews said. "You never know what you'll get into once you get under the road. And weather can play a factor too."

While crews replacing the main sewer lines and the service lines have the road open, Matthews' department will replace water lines to avoid cutting into the road later. 

"We'll touch base with the restaurants before we switch those over, since they require water to operate," Matthews said.