Prior to Thursday morning’s bridge enhancement meeting, several bridge committee members were unsure about the bridge design — which they spoke candidly about during the bridge committee meeting.
Bridge committee members were still concerned about the ease of expansion to four lanes in the future, as well as that the lighting may not “pop” as much as some committee members would like.
However, after meeting with the engineers and going over the plans and enhancements again and viewing renderings, both the Franklin and Warren County presiding commissioners, Washington mayor and bridge enhancement committee members were pleased with the design.
The committee includes Bob Zick, Highway 47 Bridge Committee chairman; Darren Lamb, the city’s community and economic development director; Mayor Sandy Lucy; Mercy Hospital President Terri McLain; Franklin County Presiding Commissioner John Griesheimer;
Warren County Presiding Commissioner Arden Engelage; Bryan Bogue, representing the Washington Historic Preservation Commission; and Bridgette Epple, executive director of Downtown Washington Inc.
During the May meeting, committee members were asked to prioritize enhancements from most to least important.
HDR Engineers, consultants on the project, Kevin Kriete and Cory Imhoff, presented the matrix with the enhancement prioritization. Committee members chose decorative railing and girder lighting as the most important features, followed by pier lighting, an overhead element and last, trail lighting.
The engineers presented four packages with enhancement options, based on the matrix. The first package only had decorative railing and girder lighting, up to package four, which included all of the enhancements.
Committee members were then shown the cost estimates for all of the packages, which ranged from about $715,000 for the most basic up to $1.82 million for every option. The committee decided not to try and light the east side of the bridge because of the added cost.
With all of the other enhancements, the estimated cost is $1.3 million.
The committee has $800,000 in enhancement funds. It plans to apply for a matching enhancement grant for $800,000 through East-West Gateway and raise funds for the additional $250,000.
If enhancement grant funds aren’t obtained, the committee will have to scale back the enhancements.
The project schedule is as follows:
Submit preliminary plans, Aug. 16, 2013;
Public hearing, October 2013;
Submit right of way plans, Dec. 31, 2013;
Submit final plans, Dec. 31, 2014; and
Final PS&E submittal, June 12, 2016, or 14 weeks prior to scheduled letting date.
The right of way plans and final plan submittal dates could be pushed up if a Tiger Grant is secured. A request for $20 million has been filed to supplement the bridge funding. Less than $500 million was available nationwide.
East-West Gateway is set to approve the 2014-2017 Transportation Improvement Plan Wednesday, June 26, which includes the $58 million for the Washington bridge.
Poster boards with renderings of the bridge will be at city hall Monday, June 24.
Judy Wagner, MoDOT area engineer, will bring the boards to Sunset on the Riverfront Thursday, June 27, beginning at 5 p.m.
A comment form is being created for those who view the bridge plans.
Engineers thanked the committee for its work, as it will not formally meet again.