Plain City intersection bid comes in far over estimate

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(Posted July 27, 2016)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

After the one bid submitted came in far over budget, it’s back to the drawing board for an intersection improvement project in Plain City.

The Madison County Engineer’s Office has plans to make the following changes at the intersection of U.S. Route 42 and West Avenue near Der Dutchman Restaurant: add lefthand turn lanes on Route 42, widen the intersection, and add a traffic signal.

The project estimate was $662,183. Decker Construction Co. out of Columbus submitted the only bid—$902,834, 36 percent over the estimate.

“I’m disappointed in the pricing. I was looking forward to getting this project started,” said County Engineer Bryan Dhume at the July 25 bid opening.

Dhume said he will review the bid and look into options, including whether or not more funding is available or if he’ll need to downsize the project’s scope.

The late David Brand, former county engineer, initiated the project. The Ohio Department of Transportation declined to fund it, stating that traffic volumes didn’t warrant a traffic signal. So, Brand sought and secured federal funding through the County Engineers Association to cover the total project cost.

Dhume noted that the project’s organization is unusual in that the county engineer’s office is administering a project on a U.S. route in a village. ODOT prepared the estimate. Maintenance of the intersection will fall to the village of Plain City.

Dhume said approximately six companies took out bid packets. As to possible reasons why only one turned in a bid, he said, “The bottom line is there’s just a lot of (road) work under way right now (in central Ohio).”

Work on the intersection was set to start in September with most of the roadway related tasks completed by Dec. 1. Because lead time on ordering traffic signal poles is 20 weeks, the deadline for installation of the traffic signal was March 1 of next year.

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