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County set to start work on roads

POSTED: April 7, 2014 7:26 p.m.

Improvements to McCall and Blue Jay roads are expected to start this week, according to temporary county administrator Toss Allen.

He also said he will meet with the president of Littlefield Construction, the Waycross paving firm that will tackle some of the county’s problematic ash roads.

Commissioners have approved a contract with EMC Engineering for engineering and design services on Courthouse Road Extension. EMC previously was awarded a contract for surveying needed to acquire the right-of-way necessary to carry out the planned improvements.

“Out of the five (bids) we received, I believe all five are perfectly capable of providing the services,” Allen said.

The contract with EMC will be $40,650, with the funds coming from special purpose local option sales tax proceeds.

Allen said right-of-way acquisition was excluded specifically from this contract.

Courthouse Road Extension work is part of the current short-term work program, and the STWP shows improvements to Zittrouer Road in the next fiscal year.

“We’re asking for permission to go ahead and bid so we can get those done this year prior to the weather getting colder,” Allen said. “The road is getting in disrepair and certainly needs it.”

Several cold snaps also have led to more damage to the road and delaying advertising until July, when the next fiscal year starts, could push those improvements starting in fall and winter. The ash mix on the road doesn’t react well in colder temperatures.

Commissioners approved seeking bids on Zittrouer, deemed one of the 20 roads in the county to be in the worst condition.

Work on other ash roads in the county could be under way, and Commissioner Steve Mason said last month that some people living on clay-covered dirt roads would be happy to have a road that can be scraped with a road grader.

“People are saying, ‘just give me back the dirt road,’” he said.

Chairman Wendall Kessler added he’s been telling people that it likely will be the end of the month before any action is taken with Bunyan Kessler Road.

Other road safety improvements have been undertaken, such as larger stop signs and rumble strips for the Courthouse-Midland intersection and the intersection of Springfield and Clyo-Shawnee roads. McCall Road also is scheduled to be re-striped.

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