Local News: Some Projects with South Industrial Park Launched, Others Slightly Delayed (09/06/22)

SIKESTON – Some of the projects involved in the Sikeston South Industrial Park are underway while others are slightly delayed.

At Monday’s city council meeting, Sikeston Public Works Manager Jay Lancaster briefed officials on the South Industrial Park and the infrastructure projects that are directly and indirectly part of the project.

One part of the project is the widening of Highway 61 from two to five lanes to accommodate traffic entering and exiting the South Industrial Park.

Although the project is funded through a MoDOT cost-sharing program, one of the things that was not known at the start but has been determined is that the utility poles owned by Ameren need to be moved to near the intersection.

“Any utility that’s not city-owned, there’s usually some cost involved in moving their lines,” Lancaster said.

The cost to Ameren to move four poles is $33,096.51. Lancaster said it’s not uncommon for those costs to be higher, adding that every effort has been made to minimize costs to the city.

“The road profile and some of the ditch slopes have been modified to minimize the number of posts that would need to be moved,” Lancaster said. “It could have been worse.”

While the cost of moving the poles was undesirable, the Board approved payment to Ameren to move the poles.

“We are committed to moving them,” said Sikeston Mayor Greg Turnbow.

Enlargement of 61

Lancaster also discussed widening Highway 61 as bids were received for the project.

Lancaster said the bid was higher than expected and after much discussion with consultants and engineering firms, he recommended the Board reject the bid in hopes of making some minor design changes to reduce costs. After the modifications, the City would reapply for the project as soon as possible.

He said time is running out for the project as the widening of 61 and the installation of signals at the intersection impact the scheduled opening of Carlisle Construction Materials in April next year. “While we understand this puts a bit of pressure on the schedule, we believe there is still time to complete the project on time,” Lancaster said.

One of the concerns of the project was the reception of the materials necessary for the installation of the signals at the intersection. However, the Council approved the materials order months ago to negate any delays in receiving the needed items.

Exceed

Another project involved in the South Industrial Park is the proposed viaduct.

The MoDOT designed this project and they also accepted bids on this recently, receiving one on this project which was also rated high.

MoDOT’s recommendation to the City was to reject this offer. MoDOT will review some minor design changes and re-offer at a more convenient time.

Lancaster said one of the most important factors was that more than half of the money paid for this overpass project came from the Governor’s cost-sharing money which was a special allocation of money only guaranteed during the state’s fiscal year, which ends at the end of this month.

The Governor’s cost-share funds were reallocated for FY23. Based on this information, MoDOT recommended rejecting the bid and reinitiating this project.

Lancaster said the latest information he had was that MoDOT was considering relaunching it in August.

Outer road

An outer road is also being constructed between the new overpass and the new signs for the South Industrial Park.

The bid to pave the entire outer road was $1,913,865 for paving and a few other miscellaneous items. Lancaster said that according to city consultant John Chittenden it was a good offer for this project.

“What we’ve landed on is that because MoDOT is rejecting and considering new bids for the overpass and some design changes that may or may not affect some of the links, it’s recommending approval of the paving of the outer route but shortening it to create a safe buffer for MoDOT to make any necessary changes,” Lancaster said. “Instead of paving the entire length, we are looking at paving around 75% of it.”

Paving the 5,540 feet would cost $1,568,061.09 and would connect the new intersection on South Main to the industrial park and head towards the proposed overpass, leaving a small section to be dealt with further once MoDOT finalizes its information more late this year. It would also include a paved connection extending Raider Way to the new outer road.

The works would also allow the road to be built until it is connected to any water and sewer improvements and allow housing development to begin.

The board awarded the bid to Lappe Cement for $1,568,061.09.

The remainder of the road to be constructed may be re-tendered at a later date or possibly added to the continuation of Lappe Cement’s work, if approved by the contractor.

Part of the project arrangement is for New Madrid County to purchase the materials for the drainage and base. New Madrid County installs stormwater and road base and Sikeston follows behind and paves and takes care of some accessories.

“This work would not begin immediately upon approval,” Lancaster said. “(New Madrid County) should finish their job before it can start.”

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