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Commissioners to look at changes to road contract
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Effingham County commissioners are expected to consider today the first change order for phase 2 and signal improvements along Old Augusta Road.

Several changes have occurred since work on the second phase began, and that will require additions to the original contract, according to county staff.

Construction on Old Augusta Road’s second phase has been under way, and county staff is seeking to reduce overall project costs by replacing safety end sections out of the clear zone with flared end sections. Because items in the original contract are based on unit prices, those items will be paid based on the quantity used.

However, some of those materials will have to be supplied in greater quantities, leading to a higher price. County staff has looked for ways to reduce costs elsewhere in the contract to balance the project budget.

Under the contract, the fence in front of Georgia-Pacific has to be relocated to the new

right-of-way. The existing fence is chain-link with a barbed wire top, and the contract called for a woven wire field fence.

To replace the original fence with a similar fence, the contract will have to be amended to include a chain-link fence with barbed top across the top.

Also, changes to the road’s elevation, needed to correct design issues, have led to changes in the required earthwork. Though grading is a lump sum in the contract, but staff is recommending the contractor, Baker Infrastructure Group, be entitled to compensation for changes made after winning the contract and to add a unit price for additional material

"We’re still compiling the information for this," county civil engineer Toss Allen told commissioners at their Aug. 21 meeting. "We’re going to break it down into pieces we can do."

Phase 2 of Old Augusta Road stretches from Chimney Road to Fort Howard Road just past Georgia-Pacific’s Savannah River Mill, a distance of a little more than four miles. It also includes installing a traffic signal at the Old Augusta Road intersection with Highway 21.

Commissioners tabled the original request for the changes at their Aug. 7 meeting, asking for more information.