Construction of Battle Ground’s South Parkway Improvement Project will take place in 2017. The city had originally projected construction would begin this summer, assuming the normal 45-day timeline for receiving the required permits from the US Army Corps of Engineers. The Corps, however, has not had the opportunity to fully review the permit applications. City engineers, who remain in contact with the Corps, have been advised that the permit applications have been routed to the Seattle office due to a staffing shortage in the Corps’ local Vancouver office.
“In normal circumstances, the Corps would have completed their review, we would have had the permit in hand, and gone to bid by now”, said City Public Works Director Scott Sawyer, “With the unforeseen delay, we have had to re-evaluate our timeline and consider the costs and effects associated with that delay.”
Those considerations were presented to Council at last week’s council meeting. Going to bid later than expected, in the midst of the summer construction season when contractors are already working can be costly, explained Sawyer. The demand is high and the availability of contractors is low. A bid process just after the summer season could generate more attractive bids, but fall and winter weather conditions are not favorable to the bottom line of a major road project or to the neighbors who travel the roadway.
Staff recommended, and council concurred, that waiting until 2017 to go to bid and construction was the most cost effective and responsible decision. “It is certainly disappointing”, said Mayor Johnson, “But we must be good stewards of the people’s money and City Council is confident that we are doing just that by going to bid and construction in 2017.”
For more information about the South Parkway Improvement Project, select the link below or contact the City of Battle Ground at 360-342-5075.