NORWAY — A major reconstruction project on Route 26 will start Thursday.

The $1.2 million job to replace old sewer and water lines on the Fair Street section of Route 26 from Grove to Green streets near the Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School is expected to disrupt traffic for up to four weeks this summer. Businesses in that area will be accessible to customers at all times, officials said this week.

Rob Prue, of Pine Tree Engineering in Bath and the town’s engineer for the job, said Tuesday the work to replace water lines in preparation for new sewer lines will begin on Grove Street by Amato’s on Thursday. That work will necessitate one lane closure at a time from about 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“The businesses are still accessible,” Prue said of this week’s work and the more comprehensive construction work that will start in mid-July when Route 26 from Grove to Green streets will be shut down entirely for up to four weeks.

Despite the tourist season being in full swing, Prue said the timing of the project was done largely to avoid a problem with school bus schedules in the fall.

A map of the proposed detours and more information will be available in the Sun Journal next week.

The construction is part of the multi-year program to upgrade most of the town’s lines and separate storm water from sewage to prolong the life of the treatment plant. The project will also improve drainage issues in the Green Street area and on Route 26.

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