The apparent low bid for constructing a new Front Street parking lot came in below the city engineer’s estimate.

Bids from five companies were opened last Friday.

Washington City Council members recently approved using money collected through the Downtown Washington TIF (tax increment financing) district to construct the new lot along the riverfront.

The city asked contractors to submit a base bid, which would involve building the entire parking lot, 93 spaces, from a point west of Olive Street to Cedar Street, plus an alternate bid to construct roughly half of the lot, 42 spaces, from Olive Street west.

The city engineer’s estimate on the full project is $125,000.

N.B. West Contracting Co. submitted the apparent low base bid of $120,289.95 and the alternate bid of $70,404.28.

Under West’s bid, the cost per parking space would be $1,336 for the full project and $1,724 if the smaller lot is built, according to a draft report prepared by City Engineer Dan Boyce.

Other bidders are:

Ford Asphalt, $120,516.21, base bid, and $76,745.21, alternate;

Byrne & Jones, $126,200 and $85,200;

KJ Unnerstall Construction, $130,050 and $80,432.26; and Lakebrink Construction, $149,392.62 and $93,961.62.

The city proposes to use street department employees to prepare the base for the lot, which will cost about $4,000 for the entire project or $2,000 for the smaller lot, Boyce said.

The lot will be paved with 4 inches of asphalt and a 5-foot-wide sidewalk will be built along the length of the lot.

Included in the bids is a 48-inch-high black vinyl coated chain link fence along the north side of the lot from Stafford Street to Cedar Street.

Previously, the council approved a supplemental agreement with Union Pacific Railroad to lease additional property on the north side of Front, between Cedar and Olive streets, for the new lot. The new agreement with the railroad increases the amount of property leased along that section of Front from about 36,000 square feet to approximately 83,000 square feet.

Under the new agreement, the city will be responsible for removing a portion of the loading dock on the west side of the old freight depot and for cutting grass and weeds on the property.

Railroad crews recently finished removing the old rail siding on the property.

An ordinance awarding the contract to West is expected to be considered by the next city council at its next meeting Monday, Oct. 7.