VALPARAISO | Work on the Chautauqua Park flood relief project will begin Monday, Chief Deputy Engineer Adam McAlpine said.
The city's Utilities Board approved the contract with G.E. Marshall, of Valparaiso, at its Tuesday meeting for $2.88 million. Marshall was the lowest of 10 bidders for the project, which was estimated to cost $4.2 million. Board members again questioned McAlpine about the bid, wondering why it was so low.
"It's just a great price," McAlpine said, adding he met with Marshall and went over the numbers to be sure it was legitimate. "I'm sure they wish the bid was higher, but they are a great contractor and it's a good price."
He said Marshall officials called this week to say they wanted to get started right away. A conference was held Wednesday and McAlpine said the company wanted to start installing sewer lines quickly rather than wait for completion of the detention basin.
The original plan was to begin preparing to construct a detention basin behind St. Paul School on Harrison Boulevard. Marshall has to build a temporary bridge over Beauty Creek and clear some trees to build a road from the detention pond to the school, where the dirt will be dumped for the school to use.
A storm sewer from the detention pond to Yellowstone Road will be laid. At that point it will go under the Canadian National tracks and lines will run to serve the northern half of Chautauqua Park. McAlpine said Marshall will start Monday on Yellowstone and arrange for the boring under the railroad while it begins to install storm, sanitary and water lines on down to Avondale Avenue and to Marion Street. Yellowstone will be closed during construction.
McAlpine said some sections of sanitary and water lines will have to be replaced where they conflict with the storm sewer work.
Most of the project is expected to be completed by December, but some paving and seeding as well as tree replacement, including on the temporary road to the school, might have to wait for spring.
By that time, the board will be ready to begin constructing the second half of the project.