CROWN POINT | Construction is expected to start in the fall on the first of two trail heads planned for the Crown Point leg of the Erie Lackawanna bike trail, officials said.
Planned for the Summit Street entry to the trail are a restroom, paved parking for up to 20 vehicles and a red-roofed shelter designed to mimic a train station exterior.
Bids for the work are expected to be let in August, Jake Dammarell, with the engineering firm Butler Fairman Seufert, told city officials in a June 26 update of the project.
The work should be done by spring 2014, Dammarell said. Butler Fairman Seufert is designing the project, which is being overseen by the Indiana Department of Transportation.
The Crown Point Board of Public Works and Safety approved an $85,560 contract with Butler Fairman Seufert for construction inspection services on the project.
"It's going to be a beautiful addition to our community," board member Bob Clemons said.
In one of the latest tweaks to the design, the restroom at the location will be a permanent structure with plumbing, instead of an earlier designed portable bathroom, officials said.
Designated bicycle lanes are planned on West and Court streets in Crown Point to handle bike traffic coming off the trail at Summit Street, in a final enhancement to the work.
Federal transportation enhancement funding of up to $634,000 is in place to cover the cost of the project.
A more complex project with a roundabout, or circular drive, and trailhead at the 93rd Avenue entry won't get underway until next year, officials said.
Bid letting is planned for fall of 2014, with work expected to start later that year or in early 2015, Damerall said.
The roundabout would replace the existing L-shaped intersection of 93rd Avenue and Chase Street, north of the Lake County Government Complex.
The new design will soften the curve of the road at the location and slow traffic, Damerall said.
"It will provide a safer intersection for the both the intersection and the trailhead," he said.
Lake County officials are in agreement with the plans, Mayor David Uran said.
"We have a good working relationship," Uran said.
The trailhead amenities include a shelter with two picnic tables and nearby benches set in a tree shaded area with a gateway entry. A paved parking lot is nearby.
Funding from the federal Surface Transportation program is expected to cover up to 80 percent of the cost of the roundabout, with a 20 percent match in local funding.
The project is expected to cost roughly $1.7 million, Dammarell said.
The full Erie Lackawanna bike trail runs along an abandoned rail line between Crown Point and Hammond.