By JOHN KLINE
THE GOSHEN NEWS
A local construction company has now officially received the green light to begin work on the next phase of C.R. 17 between C.R. 38 and C.R. 40.
Elkhart County Commissioners Monday voted to approve a contract with Milford-based construction company Phend & Brown Inc. to conduct the $1.5 million project.
The company had initially submitted the low bid for the project during the board’s Sept. 16, and the firm was recommended and approved as the ideal contractor for the project during the board’s Sept. 23 meeting.
Also submitting bids for the project were: Rieth-Riley Construction Co. Inc. of Goshen with a bid of $1,772,747; Niblock Excavating Inc. of Bristol with a bid of $1,524,983; C & E Excavating Inc. of Elkhart with a bid of $1,903,139; and Walsh & Kelly Inc. of Goshen with a bid of $1,668,002.
According to County Highway Manager Jeff Taylor, the extension will involve what is known as a “super two” design, which will essentially be a two-lane section with wide, 8-foot paved shoulders and 150 feet of right-of-way.
Taylor informed the board Monday that work on the project is expected to begin next spring, with a completion date tentatively set for August 2014.
C.R. 17 storage barn
Also accepted by the commissioners Monday were bids for a new Highway Department storage barn near the intersection of C.R. 38 and C.R. 17 to house four trucks that are assigned to work in the area.
Monday’s meeting marks the second time the barn project has come up for bids.
The project was originally bid back in July of this year, though only one company — Mishawaka-based Gibson-Lewis LLC — responded to the request, and with a bid significantly higher than the County Highway Department had originally anticipated.
According to Taylor, it was determined that his department could likely get a better price if the initial bid was scrapped as the project put out for bid for a second time with slightly altered parameters.
A total of four companies responded for the second round of bids submitted Monday. Submitting bids were: Timar Construction, Goshen, with a bid of $147,900; Ideal Construction, Warsaw, with a bid of $120,986; Schrock Commercial, Goshen, with a bid of $119,965; and IBM Construction with a bid of $113,000.
Following the opening of the bids, the commissioners moved to accept the bids and refer them on to the County Highway Department for review.