Madison company hired to fix Washington

Published 11:45 pm Friday, June 8, 2012

A Madison Construction Company will repair Washington Street south of the Washington Street bridge.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen Friday voted 3-0 to award the project to American Field Service Corp., which bid $203,536 to do the work. Mayor Paul Winfield participated in the meeting by conference call from Shanghai, China, where he is attending an international seminar as part of the executive MBA program he is taking at Tulane University.

“I’m excited to move this project along,” he said.

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Saradhi Balla of IMS Engineers, the project engineer for the repairs, said the project is expected to take 45 days to complete once the contract is signed and the contractor receives a notice to start. He said Washington Street will not be closed during the work.

“That was something we put in the contract, that the street not be closed,” he said.

Balla said street repairs involve replacing 10 paved panels on the street and repairing the roadbed, adding the street was uneven from moisture under the road. The street was paved with 10- by 20-foot sections or pallets.

He said the retaining wall near the street will be braced by about 30 anchors installed horizontally and vertically in the ground and against the wall to keep it from moving. He said the wall is structurally sound.

The board declared an emergency Feb. 28 and restricted traffic on Washington Street south of the bridge after a city crew repairing a water leak near the retaining wall saw it move as heavy trucks went by, adding there was a gap between the wall and the slope.

When the emergency was declared, the board ordered that vehicles weighing more than 26,001 pounds, which included tractor-trailer rigs, log trucks, school buses and large emergency vehicles, be detoured from the street.

The board on April 26 transferred $265,000 from the city’s recreation department to the street department to pay for the repairs.

The problem with the street was discovered shortly after the new bridge, which had been closed for three years for construction, was reopened to traffic. City officials have said the problem with the wall, which was built in 1929 when the bridge was built or the early 1930s, is not related to the bridge.

The Washington Street bridge was closed in 2009 while Kansas City Southern Railway and Kanza Construction Co. of Topeka, Kan., replaced the bridge with a concrete bridge atop a railroad tunnel.


On the agenda

Meeting Friday, the Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen:

• Approved the claims docket. The vote was 2-1 with South Ward Alderman Sid Beauman opposing. Beauman said he opposes payments to NRoute and the Vicksburg-Tallulah Regional Airport.

• Adopted the board minutes from the April 2 meeting.

• Received a report on events at the Southern Cultural Heritage Center.

• Authorized Mayor Pro Tem Michael Mayfield to sign an agreement with Sprint/Nextel to adjust the city’s radio frequencies.

Motorola is changing the city’s public safety frequencies at no charge to prevent problems with cell phone transmissions from Sprint/Nextel interfering with the radios.

• Authorized Mayfield to sign an agreement with Southern Natural Gas Co. of Birmingham, Ala., for gas transmission and storage.

City purchasing director Tim Smith said the contract allows the city to use Southern as a backup system in case Gulf South of Houston, Texas, which has a 10-year contract with the city for gas transmission and storage, is unable to move gas to the city.

• Approved the final payment of $6,520 to Rebel Services LLC of Ripley for building an environmentally safe fuel farm at the Vicksburg Municipal Airport.

• Adopted a resolution seeking funds from the state’s 2013 Occupant Protection Grant program. The program funds seat belt and child restraint enforcement and education programs, and provides money for child safety seats, which can be given away by police to parents.

In a related matter, the board named grants coordinator Marcia Weaver the city’s agent for the application.

• Authorized applying for the U.S. Department of Justice Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant program. The program provides funds to buy body armor for police officers.

The board named Weaver as the city’s agent to apply for the grant.

• Authorized applying for a grant for the city’s skate park project from the Tony Hawk Foundation. The foundation provides grants to build skate parks. Weaver said the money will be combined with the $100,000 Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks grant the city received for the park, which will be built at City Park. She said a fundraiser for the park in May raised an additional $1,200 for the project.

The board named Weaver the city’s agent for the grant.

• Authorized applying for a Mississippi Department of Public Safety TRIAD grant for crime prevention and safety programs for senior citizens. The money will be used to purchase weather radios for senior citizens.

• Authorized City Clerk Walter Osborne to advertise for bids for the maintenance of Riverfront Park, the Art Park at Catfish Row and the Crawford Street lockup and closure.

• Approved a resolution placing a lien of $157.50 for cleaning property at 1228 Grammar St. owned by the State of Mississippi.

• Authorized the city to cut and clean the following properties: a lot on Cairo Drive, 803 Fifth North St.

• Approved a letter to Kansas City Southern Railway concerning closing the following intersections for the Miss Mississippi Pageant, June 30: Levee Street at South Street, Levee at Depot Street, Pearl Street at Klein Street, Pearl at Speed Street, Water Street at Levee, Oak Street at Mulberry Street, and the entrance and exit to the City Front floodwall.