Baldwin Until further notice, the Baldwin City Fire Department will respond to calls backward - at least as the truck leaves the fire station.
A long-anticipated $1.8 million downtown Baldwin City streetscape project started late Tuesday as crews began ripping up a sidewalk at Sixth and High streets. Crews are replacing a waterline in downtown Baldwin City as the first leg of a project that will replace sidewalks and street lights and increase accessibility for people with disabilities.
Because of the work, fire trucks no longer will have access to High Street and must leave the station from the back door and head into the alley north of High.
"We'll live with it," said Fire Chief Allen Craig, as he finished taking the big quint ladder truck out the front way for the last time until the project is complete.
The project originally was set to be done last year, but the city rejected bids.
A contract stipulation calls for construction to stop by Oct. 5, even if the project is not complete, so downtown will be ready for the 50th annual Maple Leaf Festival. If necessary, construction will resume after the festival, which will begin with fireworks Oct. 19 and get in full swing Oct. 20-21.