Nags Head halts stormwater master plan projects

Published 1:24 pm Saturday, February 29, 2020

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The Nags Head Board of Commissioners met February 18 for a recessed meeting to discuss several construction projects in need of board approval.

The first dealt with stormwater master plan projects: the construction of two separate drainage infrastructures including the installation of French drains on the east side of Old Oregon Inlet Rd. and wet well/pump installation near Harvest Dr.

Bidding for the project closed at the end of January and the town received bids from three companies: RPC Contracting Inc., Hatchell Concrete, Inc. and Barnhill Contracting Company. Barnhill came in with the lowest bid at $1.26 million. After negotiation, the bid was lowered to about $759,000. With a 5% contingency, an estimated $800,000 was the final cost of the project.

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Hunter Freeman with WithersRavenel admitted that his original estimate for the project was based on a previous project completed by Hatchell the year before. Also, there was a late change from a town specification to an NCDOT specification with the project, which was thought to have affected the bid. “Their specifications are more rigid than the town specifications,” Freeman said.

Commissioner Webb Fuller was not in favor of expending funds for this due to the high bid and the fact that DOT is not a major player in the project. “Until DOT becomes part of solution, I don’t think this should be burden on the town alone,” he said.

Town manager Cliff Ogburn said that after speaking with DOT about the project, they shared that “they do not have the funds to contribute” at this time. They added it would most likely be 18 to 24 months before they could expend maintenance funds.

The board suggested breaking apart the projects, understating that a re-bidding process would need to occur. Commissioner Renee Cahoon made a motion to take no action on the project right now. The motion included delaying consideration until the fall of 2020. All board members were in favor and the motion carried unanimously.

Following this decision was discussion about the multi-use path projects along US 158 in Nags Head. Bids for the two projects were received on Feb. 11, coming in at $533,900 for Phase 8B and $613,260 for Phase 8C from RPC.

The projects are set to begin early March and finish around mid-June. Commissioner Cahoon made two motions in approval of the projects, authorizing Ogburn to enter into an agreement with RPC for the next phases. This passes unanimously.

Lastly, Mayor Ben Cahoon read a resolution in favor of improvements to Alligator River Bridge. The bridge, constructed between 1960-62, is in need of repairs and replacements. A similar resolution was adopted by the Dare County commissioners in early February. The Nags Head commissioners were all in favor of repairs to the bridge.



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