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Road work brings big bills to some C.R. residents

E Ave and Stoney Point Rd will be getting improvements in the highlighted areas. (CBS2/FOX28)

Residents living along E Avenue NW and Stoney Point Road in Cedar Rapids will see some big road improvements later this year but the project also means some big bills.

The city is assessing 263 properties for the work that will rebuild the road from seal coat and ditches to concrete curb and gutter; those assessments range from $490 to nearly $4,650.

The work on E Avenue will stretch from Stoney Point Road to 80th Street where it will connect to the final section of Highway 100.

The work on Stoney Point Road will go from a roundabout at E Avenue to the entrance of Cherry Hill Park.

Many residents are upset and surprised by learning they will have to pay a piece of the improvements.

“I figured the local option sales tax covers the road and that but they said ‘yea but then you have to pay for it because you're going to be using E Avenue,” says KC Wiedenman, a 9-year resident of the Stoney Point Meadows Neighborhood.

Cedar Rapids is paying 88% of the $7.5 million price tag but they say because this is new pavement, surrounding residents are being assessed for the remaining 12%.

“We prorate the assessment going away from the road generally however much we think that they're going to use that roadway to get in and out of their subdivision,” says Paving for Progress Program Manager, Doug Wilson.

People we spoke with agree the upgrades, which include sidewalks, are needed.

“It's unsafe for the kids, for anyone really, runners, walkers, anyone on foot or on bike to get there safely to the park which is close, Truman School, Coolidge School,” says resident Nancy Miller about the current road.

Wilson says the assessments on surrounding properties is typical of this kind of project.

“We've been doing it for several years here in the City of Cedar Rapids and this is very standard practice and not uncommon throughout the state.”

People don’t have to pay up just yet, a final assessment will be made once the work is complete.

“If it's less than $500 they'll get a final notice of assessment in about two years and they'll have to pay that, otherwise they can take 10 years to pay it off at a minor interest rate back to the city,” says Wilson.

The project is expected to be complete in 2019.

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