On Tuesday July 12, 2022 the Early City Council met to review and discuss bids that were received for the Autumn Drive reconstruction. The city set out for bids back in June and were anticipating the cost of the project to fall somewhere in the neighborhood of $600,000.
“Through the process over the last month or so, we have been in contact with four different contractors that were interested in bidding on the project. But when the bids were received this last Friday, we received one bid for the total project and one bid for just the concrete work.” Said City Administrator Tony Aaron.
The two bidders that submitted bid proposals are Grider Paving who bid the entire project at a total of $1.16 million and Ribble Concrete who bid the concrete portion of the project at $285,000.
“Through some valued engineering and replacing some materials and changing concrete drives to asphalt drives, we believe we are able to get that construction cost to somewhere around $850,000.” Said Tony.
Which is still $250,000 higher than what was expected and budgeted for back in October of 2021. Which is why after discussion was held by the council, Tony Aaron gave his recommendation that the council should reject all bids in order to give some time for the cost to potentially go down.
Most contractors in this area have several projects that they are currently working on and their availability is limited which has a direct impact on their cost. Along with that, cost of materials continues to increase at a rate that makes it difficult to budget for a major project such as the Autumn Drive Reconstruction project.
“We really started talking about this in 2019 and we engaged the engineers in 2020. At that time, the cost was around $300,000 but then we realized there was going to be the need for underground drainage so the cost then shot up to $600,000 and we still undershot it.” said Aaron.
The cost of this Autumn Drive project has double twice over that last two years which is why Mr. Aaron decided it was in the city and citizen’s best interest for the Council to reject the bids and come back in the Fall when work has slowed down for contractors and the city can receive bids with more competitive pricing.
“The price could still go up because with inflation, everything is very uncertain. So it’s time for us to do our due diligence and reassess ways to still deliver on the promise of the Autumn Drive Reconstruction while also doing it at the least cost to the city.” Aaron said.
For now, the project will be put on hold until the city goes back out for bids in the Fall and reevaluate any new pricing that comes in.