Roadwork to begin on Pell Ave.

Published 4:00 am Wednesday, March 25, 2015

After being surveyed, the city’s environmental department determined that Pell Avenue was in dire need of repairing.

“We’ve been monitoring the street, and it’s settled a good bit in the past two weeks,” John Watkins, with Watkins Engineering said. “The pipe has come uncoupled under the ground, and it’s just sitting there. There is a cavity building there where the water is going through the open joint and tunneling underneath there creating more of a space.”

The department estimates the work would take 15 working days, but estimated to have several days where they could not work due to the rain.

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“The weather has really impacted work so far this year,” Watkins said. “That’s something we have no control over, so we bid it in working days. If it rains that day isn’t counted, and you give them enough time after to dry out so they can go back to work.”

Watkins said the construction would close off through traffic for locals, but would still allow for the fraternity members to be able utilize Fraternity Circle.

Watkins said the low bidder was Blakenship Construction, and the company would be given a maximum of 35 working days to complete the project.

“Start with the work and stay with the work until it’s finished,” Watkins said. “They have 35 working days to complete the project, and the longer we can keep traffic off the road, it makes a safer work place for traveling.”

Blakenship Construction was also awarded the bid to work on storm drains on Ray Avenue and Dozier Drive; however, that work is not set to begin until after the city receives a commitment from contractors to build an apartment complex on Dozier Drive.

“This work will not be done immediately,” Reeves said. “This will be done when there is a commitment from the group to build the apartment complex. With the water that will be generated from that complex, we’ve already got a problem with the hotels. If you come off of George Wallace Drive and onto Ray Avenue and go down, all that water dumps out through there so this will allow for a very large development and an upgrade and rehab on all the storm water that is coming out of that area where the hotels are.”

The city council also approved the repaying of funds the city had committed to Troy City Schools in 2004.

“Back in 2004, the city committed to fund some upgrades at Charles Henderson High School,” Reeves said. “We had a structured funding agreement that was part of those. In 2011, the 2004 bonds were refinanced, and when that happened the funding agreement that was part of the 2004 bond issue did not become part of the 2011 bond issue.”

Reeves said the city had ceased to be billed after the school board refinanced the bonds, but understood the commitment the city had made to the school board and wished to honor it.

“We ceased to be billed from the trustees for that money, but that is a commitment that we made,” Reeves said. “They would not have undertaken the building process those years ago without our commitment.”

The city will repay the school board a total of $220,000 to cover the 2012, 2013 and 2014 fiscal years. Reeves also said that the city’s budget would be amended for the 2015-2016 fiscal year to include a line item of approximately $95,000.

The city also approved making items surplus from several of the departments for the city to be sold at an auction at the Pike County Cattleman’s Association the weekend of April 10.

“This resolution gives the city clerk the authority to dispose of some no longer needed surplus property,” Witherington said. “Several of our department have included items that they no longer need or use, this is something that has been done many times over the years and before they can dispose of that and get it surpluses we will need to give our approval.”

The council also approved the transfer of a Class 1 liquor license to the Courtyard by Marriot, awarded the IT Audit bid to High Tide Technology LLC out of Montgomery, approved an agreement between Southeast Alabama Highway Safety Office which allows for the city to be reimbursed for paying officers for overtime worked and finalized the ATRIP agreement for the work to be done on Elm Street.

The city council meets regularly every second and fourth Tuesday of each month with the work session beginning at 4 p.m. and city council meeting following at 5 p.m.