Work to replace bridge on Bazinsky expected to begin this year

Published 11:53 am Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The smallest of three state-subsidized bridge replacements planned this year was awarded Monday and work could start before year’s end.

Meanwhile, the firm hired to install a new bridge on Redbone Road is expected to pick up late fees despite the crossing’s opening to traffic last week.

A new relief bridge will span about 30 feet of Bazinsky Road at Durden Creek for $444,410.76, as per a low bid from Fordice Construction. Terms dictate a 100-working-day time frame. Final paperwork shouldn’t take more than two months before equipment moves at the site, County Engineer John McKee said.

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The new bridge will exhaust the last $86,000 in state funds available to Warren County for the year, said Dan Tolar of the Office of State Aid Road Construction. So-called “state aid” funds are allocated to Mississippi counties based on size and population. Warren’s allocation for 2010-11 totaled $1,263,987.22.

A detour route for traffic on Bazinsky has not been announced.

Farther south, work on a new bridge on Redbone Road at Paces Bayou is completed, but for extra signs. Still, a report for October from Laurel-based Magco Inc. is expected to show the 90-working day time frame on the builder’s $541,845.62 contract has expired, said Brian Robbins of ABMB Engineers Inc.

The late rate would be $300 a day, based on the overall cost of work in the Mississippi State Specifications for State Aid Road and Bridge Construction’s penalty scale.

Fordice expects to finish replacing the twin bridges on Fisher Ferry Road across the Big Black River after Jan. 1. As of Monday, the company has been on the job 117 of the 150 working days spelled out in the $1.5 million contract.

Delays on each have been attributed to extreme winter cold followed by record heat this summer, with late material deliveries blamed on the historic flood on the Mississippi River between. High fuel prices last winter and early spring spiked construction bids statewide, including Magco’s on the Redbone bridge, which surpassed the state’s estimate by 14 percent.

Three of four bids opened Monday for the Bazinsky Road bridge replacement, including Fordice’s offer, were below the state’s $506,315 estimate.