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Posted on: September 26, 2019

Mart Messenger: First Bids Under Budget


Bidding closes under budget on key infrastructure project contract - By Bill Reynolds - Messenger Correspondent

Things don’t always go according to plan, but that’s not necessarily bad.

The bid process for the City of Mart’s proposed multi-million dollar federally financed infrastructure project is a prime example.

Bids opened Tuesday morning on the contract for a new water transmission line, a key component of the City’s $17.5 million streets and water system overhaul, came in significantly under budget, according to Mart Chief Planning Officer Henry Witt, III.

“The totals for the base bid plus alternates appears to be approximately $691,000 under budget* for this contract,” Witt said Tuesday afternoon. “That’s very good news for the citizens of Mart.”

A dozen firms submitted bids for the transmission line contract, one in a series of major upgrades covered by a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development package aimed at revamping Mart’s aging water systems and streets.

“This,” Witt stressed, “is the first of four bid openings.”

The next opening is scheduled today (Thursday) at 2 p.m. It will be for the contract addressing water distribution system improvements.

Witt said Tuesday that savings realized from the water system portion of the project can be applied to the streets budget.

“That’s the case,” said Witt, “as long as the water lines beneath them are replaced.”

The City began pursuing financing options for major infrastructure improvements here in 2013. The Rural Development funding is being counted to both improve the quality of life for Mart residents and open the door for future local commercial and residential investment. 

*The totals represented in this article are not final nor official. Contractors have not been awarded yet. After bid openings for all four contracts are completed, bids will be tabulated and made available.

The Mart Messenger is a weekly newspaper covering news in Mart and the surrounding area. For subscription and advertising info call (254) 876-3939.

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