Commission may award bridge contract Thursday

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Officials are moving forward with the emergency replacement of a damaged bridge on County Road 2201, calling a special meeting to award a contract.

County Engineer Russell Oliver said the Federal Highway Administration surveyed the bridge last Tuesday and confirmed that emergency relief funds could be used for the project.

“This project is funded at 80 percent with 20 percent match,” Oliver said.

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Oliver said he expects the total cost of the project to be somewhere in the range of $500,000 to $700,000.

The road department would typically have to wait until the next Pike County Commission meeting to even let bids, but Oliver got approval at the most recent meeting to let bids without commission approval and to hold a special meeting on Thursday so the contract could be awarded sooner.

The bids will be let earlier that morning and the commission will meet at 5:15 p.m. to consider the bids and possibly award a contract.

Oliver said the project should be finished more quickly than a typical project.

“The project is being set up with a 60-day construction timeframe after contractor receives notice to proceed,” Oliver said. “In this case, it’s actually calendar days. That’s a very rapid timeframe for a project like this. We’re pushing the margins on time to get it done as quickly as possible for the people in Goshen. It’s been a big inconvenience to them.”

County administrator Harry Sanders said the county needs to fix the bridge as soon as possible with school busses traveling across the bridge often.

“It hampers a lot of traffic through that area into Goshen and because of school coming up, a lot of buses would be using that route as well,” Sanders said.

Oliver said there will still be some legal requirements to clear before construction starts and that the 60 day timeframe isn’t a guarantee, but it’s a step in the right direction toward getting the bridge fixed.

The bridge failed earlier this summer during heavy rains.