Wed, Sep 18, 2019
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Willapa Harbor Herald • Town Crier
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Castle Rock awards bid for city-wide overlay project

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The Castle Rock City Council has approved a contractor to implement a city-wide paving project, which officials expect to be completed around the end of September.

A low bid from Lakeside Industries, based in Longview, of $700,745 was approved unanimously during the council's July 28 meeting, and was among two total bids received, the other coming from Vancouver-based Granite Constriction for $777,077.

The bulk of the project, which Public Works Director Dave Vorse said is expected to begin around the end of August or first part of September, will be paid for through a state appropriation of $488,880, given in lieu of funding normally available through the Public Works Trust Fund (PWTF) program, which was de-funded by legislators during the last budget cycle to divert its resources elsewhere.

Though PWTF normally gave low-interest loans to qualifying municipalities for infrastructure projects, State Representative Ed Orcutt had told the council in October a line item equivalent to Castle Rock's PWTF request had been approved in the state budget after the fund was eliminated, and will be given to the city as a grant.

Other funding sources include $60,000 in sales tax collected through the recently-formed Transportation Benefit District, $30,000 from the city's water budget, $12,000 from retail excise taxes, and an anticipated $250,000 loan from a federal rural development fund, to be paid off at four percent interest over 20 years.

"I think that's a big bang for our money," said Mayor Paul Helenberg to the council of the loan option, stating the funding generated annually by the Transportation Benefit District will generate enough revenue for the estimated $18,000 yearly loan payments, allowing the city to avoid raising any of its fees or taxes.

Expected to be part of the project will be overlays of the entire lengths of Eaton Ct. NE, Helton St. NE, Leaming Ave. NW, Cherry St. NW, Clearwood Ct. SE, Allen Ave. SE, Lakewood Ct. SE, Edgewood Ct. SE, Diane St. SW and Warren St. SW, and portions of Pioneer Ave. NE, 2nd Ave., 5th Ave. SW, D St. SW, C St. SW, Michner St. SW and Shear St. SW.

If funding becomes remains available, the city would also like to overlay the entire lengths of Boyd Ave. NE, McBride Ct. NE, LaRue St. NE, May Ave. NE, Cummings St. SW, portions of Dike Dr. SW, Larsen Ln. SW, 4th Ave. SW, Alder St. NW, the parking lot at the Public Works shop, and the parking lots outside the senior center and City Hall.

"When you put an overlay in, it's going to last for a long time," said Public Works Director Dave Vorse, indicating the areas affected will not have to be revisited for a number of years after the project is complete.

It was noted the bid from Lakeside Industries had been around $90,000 greater than the engineering estimate of $611,400 provided by firm Gray and Osbrone. City Engineer Mike Johnson said the largest differences between the estimate and the bid came from costs related to temporary traffic control (a $30,000 difference), the removal of structures and obstructions (a $24,200 difference), and work on sidewalks, curbs and access ramps (a difference of $18,466), stating the costs for these aspects was simply higher than expected.

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