VALPARAISO | As bids for the second phase of the Chautauqua Park flood control project were opened at Tuesday's utilities board meeting, the numbers started out good and got better.
Ultimately, the low bidder for the project was G. E. Marshall, of Valparaiso, who did the first phase. The total for the complete project was $1,267,000, which was 34 percent below the engineer's estimate of $1.94 million. Only one of the bids exceeded the engineer's estimate.
A total of seven bids were opened. All the bids will be reviewed by the consultant and the city's engineering department, and a recommendation will be presented to the board at its March 11 meeting. Work on some portions of the project could begin in April.
Deputy City Engineer Adam McAlpine said the city expects to complete condemnation on the portion of the former Valparaiso Technical Institute property needed for the detention pond in April so work can begin on that by the end of April.
A lot of the work will be done around Memorial Elementary School during the summer after school lets out. It will be completed before school resumes in the fall.
The bids were broken into three parts with a minimum project being the detention pond, a storm sewer running from the pond north to Park Avenue and reconstruction of a portion of Park in front of Memorial school.
The first option for additional work in the bids was for storm sewers running east on Prospect Avenue and north on Center Street; east on Park to Elmhurst Aveune, and a third on Center north to Ridgeland Avenue.
The second alternative was for a storm sewer on the north side of the school property running on Grove Avenue to Elmhurst. Also, a storm sewer would be built on the southern end of George Street to Yellowstone Road.
McAlpine said the low bids means the city will have enough money to do all three areas.