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The way it was: Street paving -- 1956
Earth moving equipment prepared the surface of West Main Street in front of the old Riverton High School for paving, pictured in July 1956. File photo

The way it was: Street paving -- 1956

Jul 15, 2013 - Staff

Riverton citizens and civic leaders engaged in an argument for a decade about whether -- and how -- to pave the city's streets.

A plan to "oil" the streets was canceled at the 11th hour in the late 1940s amid heated controversy about sidewalks, curbs, gutters and irrigation ditches connected to the proposal.

Eventually, the arrival of the great uranium boom that began in the mid-1950s convinced the majority that a modern paving program was required.

Work began as soon as school was out in 1956, continuing for a full year in sequence across five separate paving districts around the city.

Corresponding placement of new sewer and water mains accompanied the paving, and Mayor Willa Wales Corbitt pushed for the inclusion of full curb and gutter throughout the city.

Only a few city blocks didn't get the full treatment.

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