Of­fi­cials hope­ful Rt. 272 project will be re-bid

Cecil Whig - - & - By JES­SICA IANNETTA

NORTH EAST

jian­netta@ce­cil­whig.com

— De­spite re­ceiv­ing lit­tle in­for­ma­tion from the State High­way Ad­min­is­tra­tion, town of­fi­cials re­main hope­ful that the Route 272 bridge project will be re-bid in early fall, with con­struc­tion start­ing up again next sum­mer.

“We’ve seen noth­ing to in­di­cate that won’t hap­pen,” Town Ad­min­is­tra­tor Melissa CookMacKen­zie said dur­ing Wed­nes­day’s town meet­ing.

Con­struc­tion on the Route 272 bridge over Am­trak lines has been stalled since Fe­bru­ary due to an on­go­ing dis­pute be­tween the con­trac­tor, Mum­ford and Miller Con­crete Inc., of Mid­dle­town, Del., and the state.

But de­spite the six months work stop­page on the project, SHA has pro­vided few of­fi­cial up­dates, re­peat­edly telling town and county of­fi­cials that they couldn’t dis­cuss the dis­pute be­cause it was a “le­gal mat­ter.”

Wor­ries over the project in­creased in April when the Mum­ford and Miller pulled its equip­ment from the site. Then, in May, the com­pany told the town that the dis­pute had been re­solved and the project would be re-bid. In June, North East Mayor Robert McKnight also said SHA of­fi­cials told him the project would be re-bid with the hope of com­plet­ing it by sum­mer 2018.

Fur­ther­more, about six weeks ago, Mum­ford and Miller told Cook-Macken­zie they had just re­ceived the set­tle­ment doc­u­ments for re­view.

But be­yond these un­of­fi­cial con­ver­sa­tions, SHA of­fi­cials have re­leased few up­dates about the progress of the bridge, even going as far as to call the time­line McKnight dis­cussed “pure spec­u­la­tion.”

The last of­fi­cial up­date from SHA about the project was posted on its web­site on June 24. The up­date reads, “SHA sus­pended work on the project while we work with the con­trac­tor to re­solve some is­sues. The mat­ter is in ne­go­ti­a­tions and SHA will pro­vide an up­date on the project and sched­ule as soon as pos­si­ble. Thank you for your pa­tience.”

That up­date was posted the same day CookMacKen­zie said she emailed SHA to point out to them that their web­site still said that the con­trac­tor was work­ing on the bridge.

With lit­tle hope of hear­ing any­thing from SHA about the bridge that serves as the main en­trance to town, North East of­fi­cials have re­sorted to sim­ply re­fresh­ing the SHA web­site ev­ery once in a while to check for an up­date.

“I’ve sent you all a link to this so you can pe­ri­od­i­cally, if you’re so in­clined, check in as well,” Cook-Macken­zie told the town board.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.