The Hope City Board of Directors met for a called meeting this afternoon to consider bids for the Sixth Street Project. The meeting opened with Mayor Don Still saying, “We’ve been waiting to do this for a long time.” City Manager Catherine Cook agreed and elaborated by explaining the original resolution was submitted to Arkansas Highway Department in 2013 and again in 2014.
ARDOT (Arkansas Department of Transportation) opened bids on April 6th, and according Bryan Freeling, the State Aid Engineer for ARDOT, the low, and only, bid comes from Belt Construction for $1,948,690.74. The State Street Committee has approved the max contribution of $400,000, and the remainder of $1,548,690.74 will come from the City of Hope and has to be paid in one lump sum. The recommendation, Cook said, is that $1,000,000 will come from the City of Hope Street Fund Checking Account, $300,000 will come from the City of Hope Street Fund CD’s, and $248,690.74 will be borrowed from the sales tax fund and paid pack over the next 18 months. There is the possibility that at the end of the year when accounts are settled, the amount owed from the sales tax fund could be discharged.
Cook explained that after payment of the city’s portion of the project, about $850,000 would still remain in the street fund for larger projects for the remainder of the year. Board members held a brief discussion regarding budgeting and timeframe of the project. As of now, the estimation of the completion will be a year.
The Sixth Street Project will reconstruct the portion of West Sixth Street from the railroad to Spring Hill Road, and will also include the addition of storm drainage, the addition of bike lanes on both sides, and construction of a sidewalk on the south side. Sixth street is an arterial street which connects one major section of town to another with busy traffic. Cook advised board members to be thinking of future streets which will need major reconstruction and requests from State Street Aid since this project has shown it can be a lengthy process. Once ARDOT receives funding, they will see the project to its completion.
The bid submitted by ARDOT from Belt Construction for reconstruction in the Sixth Street Project was approved.