Elgin postpones bridge work after late bids
The city of Elgin has postponed work on 15 bridges until next year after seeking contractors later than usual and getting higher-than-anticipated bids.
The bridges remain safe to use because the repairs were not critical or safety-related but focused on long-term maintenance including crack sealing, concrete patching and ditch clearing, city spokeswoman Molly Center said.
"Although those repairs cannot be delayed indefinitely, performing them next year will not reduce safety at those sites," she said.
The bids for the projects -- including the Kimball Avenue bridge over the Fox River and bridges over Tyler, Bowes and Poplar creeks -- were about 1½ times the estimated $300,000 cost, Center said.
"We believe this was due in part to the time of year when the bids went out and bidders may have been concerned about having enough time to complete the project," Center said. "We will review the bidding conditions as well as our own plans and specifications to minimize uncertainty with potential contractors."
Bids for seasonal work typically go out earlier in the spring, but this year it took longer because City Engineer Joe Evers retired last year and Mike Pubentz, senior engineer for capital projects, was hired in late March.
The work was part of $6.4 million in capital projects budgeted this year, and the rest are done or going well, Center said.
The first set of bids was approved by the city council in June, when Pubentz said the city would have to "push" to get the projects going.
A new $1.19 million sanitary sewer from South Street through the Otter Creek Shopping Center at 250 S. Randall Road should be done by the end of the month, Center said.
Road resurfacing is mostly completed, she said, and the only work that might go into November is in the neighborhood northeast of downtown. For more information visit cityofelgin.org/2094/Construction-Projects.