Tax-funded road work anticipated in February


MORGAN CITY — The first set of roadway work, an estimated $600,000 in overlay work that will be funded through the recently passed 0.3 percent sales tax, has been identified and work is expected to begin sometime after Mardi Gras is celebrated on Feb. 21.

The city will receive bids on the overlay work, which includes portions of 15 streets, in January, and the bond money is expected to be in hand by mid-February. By that time, the city would like to have everything in order to go to work soon thereafter.

The price of the work is pegged at $599,134, assuming 2 inches of overlay are needed.

“In some cases we will only need an inch and a half. It kind of depends on what’s down there before,” Mayor Timothy Matte said.

The work will include the following areas:

—Second Street to Union Street to South Railroad Avenue.

—Second to Brashear Avenue to Egle Street.

—Second to Railroad to Everett Street.

—Sixth Street to Levee Road to Marguerite Street.

—Sixth to Greenwood Street to South Everett.

—Ditch Avenue to Railroad to La. 182.

—Union to Second to Federal Avenue.

—Third Street to South Railroad to Union.

Matte said it is possible that by the February council meeting, the council will have the next batch of street work ready to bid out. That work is expected to include concrete work on David Drive, Veterans Boulevard and Youngs Road.

“Things are moving along,” the mayor said. “As I said when we passed this, it was our intention to go to work just as soon as possible, and we’re pushing all the envelopes here to try and make sure that that happens.”

As for Victor II Boulevard, which is one of the more talked about streets in need of improvements, Matte said it will need a little more engineering and planning and design work before actual repairs can be made.

“That one’s coming,” Matte said. “It just won’t be the first project that we do.”

Matte said some small patchwork done on Victor II Boulevard awarded to a contractor has not been complete because in estimating his quantities needed, the contractor fell short by 8 feet of asphalt of the amount needed. The remaining work is in the area closest to Myrtle Street on Victor II Boulevard.

“You’ll notice a dip in the road,” Matte said. “That’s not finished.”

The mayor said the contractor hopes to return this week to finish up that section of roadwork as well as some other small items in that area.

“That is not the completion, obviously, of Victor II Boulevard,” Matte said. “That is just the temporary fix to get us to the next phase, which will be much more significant.”

While Matte said Federal Avenue also was high on the priority list, it wasn’t included in the first phase of work because it will take a little more work to complete.

The next project that will be included will be bids for primarily concrete work on David Drive, Veterans Boulevard and Youngs Road.

Also, on Jan. 20, the parish will be accepting bids on the reconstruction of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Morgan City from the entrance of the Comfort Inn and Suites to Business 90. Other parts of the street already were completed in previous phases of the project.

The parish is handling the project because it is combining state Capital Outlay monies with Community Development Block Grant monies for the city that were received through the parish.

In other news, Matte reported that the city expects to receive bids on Jan. 24 for, according to the latest estimates, four of the proposed cabins that will be constructed at Lake End Parkway.

In other city projects, the council approved a change order with Southern Constructors for Complex and Cypress improvements totaling a reduction of $30,573.

The change order was necessary to remove landscaping work, which will be completed at a later date, as well as to reflect a reduction in the price of a gazebo and fence.

The monies will be applied to a second change order, which will fund a brick column fence to tie into the leftfield wall at the end of the third base line at Complex Park. Without the increase in fencing, the fence would end at the rightfield fence of the second park that is being built adjacent to Complex Park.

The change order also includes a gate to strictly service the concession stand on the Victor II Boulevard side.

Some of the landscaping work removed will be done in-house; the H&B Young Foundation may also be asked for some additional dollars, Matte said.

The council also approved a change order reducing the total contract cost for sewer rehabilitation work in the city by $158,693.

The savings puts the total project cost at about $1.09 million, about $42,000 below the original bid of $1.13 million, Oscar Boudreaux of Environmental Engineering Services, the city’s engineering consultant, told the council Tuesday.

There still is smoke testing on Franklin Street and the Cottonwood area that needs to be complete.

After the work is complete, Boudreaux estimated the contract’s price would be about at its original bid price.

While doing the line work, Boudreaux said the city ended up with about 70 percent more point repair because of blocked or collapsed lines.

Also, Matte reported in his Louisiana Energy and Power Authority update that the lawyers working on the property acquisition for the new power plant are working out language issues, but this will not require any modifications to the project.

The environmental work is complete, and engineers designing the new power plant are free to do their necessary work on the project, the mayor said.

“We look forward to some activity this next year having to do with more formal design and (actually) start the whole procurement process,” Matte said.

He said the estimated completion date for the new plant still is June 2015.

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