Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Shawnee County Approves Contract with Wabaunsee County for Willard Bridge Project

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Shawnee County Approves Contract with Wabaunsee County for Willard Bridge Project

Article excerpt

The Shawnee County Commission approved a contract Thursday that would arrange for Wabaunsee County to cover nearly 5 percent of the costs to replace the deteriorating Willard Bridge.

Commissioners Shelly Buhler, Kevin Cook and Bob Archer voted 3-0 to adopt the agreement, which Shawnee County public works director Tom Vlach plans to bring before the Wabaunsee County Commission for consideration next week.

The proposed agreement calls for Wabaunsee County to cover 4.7253 percent of the construction, design, construction engineering, construction contingency and temporary financing costs, and all of the right of way and utility adjustment costs incurred in Wabaunsee County. It stipulates that Shawnee County cover all the right of way and utility adjustment costs in Shawnee County.

Thursday's move comes after the Shawnee County Commission voted Monday to approve a project budget of more than $24.7 million to replace the Willard Bridge and to solicit bids from companies interested in doing the work.

The bridge is located on N.W. Carlson Road, which is the boundary between Shawnee and Wabaunsee counties. Some uncertainty remains regarding what sources will provide funding for the project, and in what amounts.

Commissioners also voted 3-0 Thursday to enter into a contract that would arrange for Jackson County to pay some of the costs to replace a smaller bridge on N.W. 94th Street over the Little Soldier Creek, about two miles west of N.W. US-75 highway. N.W. 94th is the boundary between Shawnee and Jackson counties.

Shawnee County announced last month that in 2017 it would replace the bridge, which was built in 1930 and rebuilt in 1965. A 2014 report listed the bridge as being fracture critical, structurally deficient and obsolete.

The Kansas Department of Transportation will pay 80 percent of the construction, construction engineering and construction contingency costs to replace the bridge.

The contract approved Thursday calls for all other costs except for right of way and utility adjustments to be paid 94.0577 percent by Shawnee County and 5. …

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