Trip-hazard Middletown bricks won’t likely be replaced this year

The city of Middletown’s insurers have been asking city leaders for about a decade to replace pavers at the building that houses offices of city government and the city’s school district.

The loose pavers, according to the city’s insurance carrier, pose a safety hazard.

City Manager Doug Adkins said the hexagon-shaped bricks could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to replace.

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In an email Monday to this news outlet, Adkins said there was “no definite timeline on fixing the problem.”

“My best guess is that the first step would be a design phase, break the project into repair pieces we can afford to make each year, and spread the project over several years,” he wrote.

Public Works Director Scott Tadych said options are still being evaluated.

The starting cost to fix what is just around the building, not including the plaza area, is about $750,000, according to Tadych.

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Due to the cost of replacing the pavers, the city’s insurance carrier does not expect Middletown to replace all of them immediately, but does expect the city to formulate a plan to fix them over time, Finance Director Jacob Burton said.

“There is no penalty or higher rates due to the pavers at this time,” Burton said. “We had 2 claims related to the pavers in 2013, 0 claims in 2014, 2 claims in 2015, and 0 claims in 2016.”

Cost of replacing the pavers is small compared to the needs for street paving, Adkins told council members in 2015, placing a price tag on street paving at about $162 million.

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