by Max Brantley
The county’s Junction Bridge project, which would turn the former railroad bridge into a pedestrian walkway, took a blow Thursday when it received only one bid for the work ― for $14.3 million. That’s about $8 million more than the county has to spend.
Ron Quillin, director of administrative services, said the bid is being scrutinized by the county’s engineering consultants, McClellan Engineering Group, to see why the bid came in so much higher than predicted. Engineers will probably scale back the design proposal for the bridge. The Junction Bridge Facilities Board will hear the engineers’ recommendation when it meets Dec. 20.
The county budgeted the bridge at $6.5 million, from $5 million in federal transportation funds and a local matching dollars.
The bidder was Kiewit Southern, a Little Rock construction company.