Fast track: City paving beginning

It’s a bit later than usual, but work on Marietta’s annual asphalt paving program is slated to begin today in the city’s Norwood district.

“We’ll start milling pavement on Warner and Porter streets, then move to Woodland off Kenwood Street,” said Marty White, manager with Shelly & Sands, contractor for the 2013 city streets resurfacing project.

He said all 16 municipal roadways scheduled for paving in this year’s program should be completed by Wednesday or Thursday next week, weather permitting.

White said the 2013 paving season has been heavy with Ohio Department of Transportation work, which has resulted in some projects coming in later than normal.

“We’ve had a lot of ODOT work to do, including projects on Ohio 821, the Marietta bike path, and a major job on Farson Street in Belpre,” he said.

In addition to paving the city streets, the Shelly & Sands contract included federally-required installation of Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant sidewalk ramps at each intersection along streets to be paved.

“There were a lot of ADA ramps, about 40 of them that had to be done,” White said, adding that installation of the ramps is the most time-consuming part of the project.

“You have to be very, very particular,” he said.

Marietta city engineer Joe Tucker said the 2013 asphalt paving contract, for $455,254, specified completion of the work by Oct. 4.

“According to the contract, any date beyond Oct. 4 results in a liquidated damages penalty for every day the project comes in late,” he said.

Tucker did not know the penalty amount, but said the city follows a formula used by ODOT to calculate the liquidated damages penalty.

He said no extension has been requested nor granted to Shelly & Sands on the citywide paving project.

City officials began planning for the 2013 paving program in 2012 so that the project could be included in the 2013 municipal budget. The city relies heavily on grant monies from the Ohio Public Works Commission and Community Development Block Grant to help pay for each year’s paving projects.

“Because of the grants we can’t award the bid contracts any earlier than July 1 of every year,” Tucker said. “We get these contracts out as early as we can, and we bid this one out in July, so there should have been plenty of time to complete the job by October.”

He acknowledged there was a lot of work on Shelly & Sands’ plate this year.

“But when it comes to paving, the earlier in the season the better,” Tucker said. “You have to watch the weather conditions as well as temperatures both day and night.”

White said he’s been watching the weather forecasts and doesn’t anticipate much problem temperature-wise.

“They’re calling for about 50 degrees every day, and the ground temperature is still pretty warm this time of year,” he said, adding his main concern could be some periods of rain that are forecast within the next week.

White said once the street surfaces are milled the actual paving should take no more than four or five days.

Streets in the 2013 citywide paving program include Warner, Porter and Woodland streets in 1st Ward; Ephraim Cutler Street, Clifton Street, Gross Street, Betsey Mitchell Lane, and Butler Street (Fifth to Seventh streets) in 2nd Ward; Fourth Street (Ferguson to Cityview), St. Mary’s Avenue, Cullen road, Hickory Lane, and Marigold Lane in 3rd Ward; and Elm Street (Lord to Maple) Clinton Street (Harmar to alley east of Franklin), and Harmar Street (Lord to Lancaster) in the 4th Ward.