Arch Road bid awarded to city firm

WESTFIELD – City officials are still reviewing submissions for the Arch Road improvements following the bid opening Tuesday, but expect to present a contract to the Board of Public Works at their March 12, 2013 meeting.
Purchasing Director Tammy Tefft, said the city received 10 submissions for the work and that the “apparent low bidder” is J.L. Raaymaker, Inc., of Westfield who submitted a bid of $684,745. This was the third time the Arch Road work was released for bids because of issues with bid specifications. The initial bid drew 13 responses, while 16 firms submitted bids in the second round.
City Engineer Mark Cressotti said that the cost of the project dropped with every bid cycle.
“We’ve been saving money every time,” Cressotti said. “I plan to present the contract and recommendation to the Public Works Board in March and expect that construction will begin shortly after that.”
“Generally, you figure that the construction season begins in the middle of March, weather dependent, and that the batch plants open in late April, but you can start to dig before the plants open,” Cressotti said. “The project is excavation of a trench to install a larger drainage pipeline down to the brook and work to take some of the curves out of the roadway, then patch the trench. It is not going to be a curb-to-curb paving project.”
The focus of the project is to correct the drainage problem created when the state and city revamped the Massachusetts Turnpike access, creating the jughandle system that motorists, northbound on North Elm Street (Clay Hill), now use to enter the turnpike.
That project was designed with a large drainage pipe collecting stormwater from that area and dropping it into the existing Arch Road drainage system which terminates at Arm Brook just beyond the intersection of Arch and Lockhouse roads.
The problem with that drainage connection was soon apparent.  Property and business owners observed stormwater, when collected in the jughandle during heavy downpours, began shooting up from the storm drain manholes, sometimes gushing a couple of feet high.
City officials and engineers investigated and discovered that the jughandle drainage was about twice the circumference of the Arch Road drainage line which could not accept the volume of stormwater being delivered by the jughandle line.
Cressotti said the Arch Road drain line will be replaced with a new line the same size as the jughandle drainage system to alleviate the discharge through the manhole drains intended to collect water from Arch Road.
“It’s an expensive project, but not that complex,” Cressotti said.

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