Council rejects Main St. project bids

The project will add historic decorative lighting and replace sidewalks, curb and gutter on Main Street between 5th and 6th Avenues.
By Pat Ratliff | Aug 16, 2012

The City of Edmonds, on Aug. 9, received four bids for the Main St. Decorative Lighting and Sidewalk Enhancements project.

The project will add historic decorative lighting and replace sidewalks, curb and gutter on Main Street between 5th and 6th Avenues.

But there was a problem with the bids.

“We only got four bidders and all of the bids were over the estimates; plus none were responsive, they were all deficient in meeting the Disadvantage Business Enterprise goal for the project,” Phil Williams, Public Works Director for Edmonds said.

Sometimes information can be added to the bids to bring them into compliance, but no such luck with these bids.

“There was no way to fix those,” Williams said.

There’s also the issue of timing. The city is working on a close schedule in order  to impact the businesses affected by the project in the least amount possible.

“We’re trying to get this off the ground by Dec. 10,” he said.

The fix for this problem? Get the bids back out there so they can be correctly submitted.

The city contacted WSDOT, and they approved a two week re-advertisement of the project instead of three, and staff has scheduled the bid opening for August 27, 2012.

This may allow the council to consider the award of the project at the August 28, 2012 Council meeting, if correctly submitted bids are received.

And the council, at their Aug. 14 meeting, had to pass a resolution (No. 1281,) which rejected all the bids received Aug. 9. They did that by a 7-0 vote.

The project is scheduled to be finished before the Christmas rush of shoppers (hopefully) will be using the area.

Funding for the project includes a  2010, $725,000  grant from the federal transportation enhancement program to “install new light poles and decorative poles for planter baskets and artist made elements,” according to city documents. “The new sidewalk will improve pedestrian safety by replacing sidewalk that has been displaced by existing street trees along the corridor.

“The existing street trees will be removed due to the damage they are causing to the surrounding infrastructure and replaced with new street trees that are better suited for this location.”

The City also received a direct appropriation of $500,000 from the State Legislature in April 2012 to add even more improvements and enhance the project.

These improvements will include “street furniture, a mid-block pedestrian crossing, relocation of overhead power to an adjacent alley, street pavement reconstruction and use of low impact stormwater devices and materials,” according to the city.

The look of Main Street will be significantly changed, as reported in the Beacon May 17.

“This project completes the downtown,” then Councilmember Michael Plunkett said when council approved plans for the project. “It was left off when the rest of downtown was redone.”

It calls for wide sidewalks, 10 – 12 ft. wide, which will allow for easier walking and outdoor dining options, but design

The trees that are currently ruining the sidewalks will be replaced by 18 maple trees. Maples are more columnar, so they won’t interfere with retail operations, and have deep-seated roots that won’t tear up sidewalks in the future.

The entire street will be reconstructed, and the 1920’s cast water pipes underground will be replaced at the same time.

A significant improvement will be storm water lines that will put about 90 percent of the water they collect back into the ground instead of running out into the Sound.

Because the block is nearly 600 feet long, a mid-block crossing is also going in, which will also help slow traffic down.

Add four more artistic flower poles and street furniture such as bike racks, benches and waste containers, and the look is going to change dramatically.

Public Works Director Phil Williams worked with retailers along the street to try to lessen any impacts during construction.

Together, they have devised a timeframe between the end of all the festivals and before the Christmas shopping rush. Disruptions will be as minimal as possible.




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