Bridge to a better future in Cazenovia

The Clark Street bridge is expected to be reopened for public use almost a year to the day it was closed by the Madison County Highway Department.

At the Cazenovia Village Board meeting on Feb. 6, trustees unanimously approved the payment of no more than $200,000 to Tioga Construction, of Utica, for the demolition and reconstruction of a concrete bridge on Clark Street.

Having received seven bids from other construction firms, ranging from $260,000 to $280,000, the board decided to accept the offer from Tioga, who came highly recommended. Construction is expected to conclude this May.

“[Tioga has a] lengthy resume of State Department of Transportation work, county work, heavy highway, bridge and road construction. That’s what they do, day in and day out,” said Cazenovia Village Trustee Tim Mahoney. “Frankly, they probably had one of the best resumes out of the bunch, and we were fortunate to have them bid on our ‘little’ project.”

Mahoney outlined expected costs, including galvanized steel guiderails, which will cost about $15,500; $109,244 for the bridge itself; 10,000 for approach guide rails; $22,000 to two engineering firms for their research and assistance in planning; and $20,000 for new asphalt and labor, which will be completed by Madison County along with the approach rails. The remaining funds were built into the budget to account for unseen costs that may arise.

Thanks to the $150,000 grant secured by Assemblyman Bill Magee, the village is able to use funds from its Highway Capital Budget to pay for the remainder of the project costs.

Board members and residents were given the opportunity to discuss technical details of the project with Village Engineer John Dunkle, who recommended the board employ Tioga and include the approaching guiderails.

“Right now there are no guiderails on the approach to that bridge. As you would see on a typical bridge design on a state highway, there are guiderails that funnel any deflecting traffic into the bridge and keep it pointed straight, rather than hitting the abutments or going off the side,” Dunkle said.

Following the passing of the resolution, Village Mayor Kurt Wheeler signed a notice of award, which Dunkle then passed to contractors.

“I think we’re going to end up with a safer situation than we have now,” Wheeler said. “The good news is that none of us in our lifetimes will ever have to worry about this bridge again. Maybe other bridges, but thankfully not this one.”

Pierce Smith is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at 434-8889 ext. 338 or editor@cazenoviarepublican.com.

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