- Associated Press - Friday, June 19, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - A project to transform a Lincoln alley into an artistic space for pedestrians to walk through is getting a little more expensive.

The city will spend almost $59,000 to pay a contractor to remove newly laid brick pavers and fix a drainage system, after water began flowing in the basement of an adjacent building, the Lincoln Journal Star (http://bit.ly/1G9TPft ) reported.

The alleyway was repaved last fall to make it smoother, safer and easier for pedestrians. The company that performed that work had installed “an enhanced drainage system” to eliminate puddles in the alley, but the system didn’t work as planned, said Miki Esposito, director of Public Works and Utilities.

The original budget for the Gallery Alley renovation was $726,000, including a $50,000 endowment for future maintenance. A $41,000 contingency fund for the project already had been committed for other work.

The alley currently features artwork on the Burkholder Project building, including hanging ceramic masks and falling stars. Artist Mike Nelson this week is painting a mural on another building across from the Burkholder Project. Special lighting that will hang across the alley likely will be installed sometime in late summer.

Funding sources for the project include $269,000 from tax increment financing, $204,000 from the street construction budget, $36,000 from the general fund budget and $190,000 in private donations.

Work on the alley’s far-south portion has been delayed until a building is reconstructed. The company that owns the building has indicated it might replace the one-story structure with a four-story building. Officials expect additional private funds will pay for the alley’s completion on the far-south end.

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Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, http://www.journalstar.com

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