Fourth Street bids arrive higher than expected

The city’s Fourth Street reconstruction project could cost a little under $2 million, if officials go with the low bidder — which would make the project about $400,000 more expensive than previously expected.

The Columbus Board of Works has opened bids for the project and voted to take them under advisement. According to assistant city engineer Andrew Beckort, the city received the following bids:

Milestone Contractors: $1,888,508.15

Dave O’Mara Contractor, Inc: $1,982,416

All-Star Paving, Inc: $2,722,737.49

The engineering department’s agenda for the board’s Nov. 30 meeting includes signing a form to award the project to “the lowest responsive and responsible bidder.”

City Engineer Dave Hayward said in late October that officials hoped the locally-funded project might be about $1.5 million but added that “Estimates are just a guess.” On the low end, Milestone’s bid is about 26% over that figure, and O’Mara is about 32% over. All-Star’s bid is about 82% over.

Beckort said the work includes a water main from Franklin Street to Lafayette Avenue and “full street reconstruction” from Lafayette to California Street.

“We need to put in storm sewers, city utilities needs to put new water mains in that area (Franklin to California),” Hayward said in October. “The water mains, they believe, have lead connections, so we need to get rid of those. And by the time we dig up the street for the water main and the storm sewer, we’ve pretty much destroyed the whole street. So we are planning to reconstruct that.”

According to the most recent specifications from the engineering department, the project’s scope of work includes water main installation, water services, storm sewer, curbs, sidewalks, ADA ramps and asphalt pavement. The project is to be completed by Aug. 4, 2022.

Board member John Pickett, who lives in the neighborhood, asked what will happen with nearby intersections once the project is underway, especially given the number of churches and schools in the area.

“It’s probably the most complicated half-hour of traffic in Columbus around those schools during school let-out time,” he said.

Beckort replied that the city has met with the Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp., as well as St. Peter’s Lutheran Church.

“When we select a contractor, we’ll have a meeting to coordinate how best to stage this project,” he said.

Pickett added that First Christian Church also has a preschool in the area, and Beckort said the city will reach out to them as well.