Bridge plans near I-74 delayed

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Plans to replace a bridge near Interstate 74 have been delayed, and the county is now looking at the bond market to pay for the project.

The project on C.R. 100W, just north of the interstate, has run in to state permitting delays, county administrator Mark Casteel told the county council Tuesday. Contractors were expected to be hired this spring.

The change in funding plans set in motion a series of money transfers from the county’s cumulative bridge fund to “get all the other things we had planned already this year,” Casteel said.

The council approved the transfer of more than $121,000 for surveying equipment and to cover the second phase of major bridge inspections.

An additional $877,425 came out of the fund for other bridge projects that were granted bids by the board of commissioners this week.

The $30,000 surveying equipment will be used to inspect small bridges and culverts. The county engineer has agreed to perform the inspections to save the cost of hiring contractors, Casteel said.

Indianapolis-based engineering firm American Structurepoint evaluates the condition of larger bridges.

“Once they do these inspections, [Peck and American Structurepoint] will assign [pavement surface evaluation] ratings and so forth, and then we can prioritize not only our replacements, but also our maintenance schedule,” Casteel said.

In other business, the council approved the transfer of $61,000 to the public defender’s supplemental budget for the hiring of a new deputy public defender. One of the attorneys resigned last year.

The next meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. March 10 at the courthouse.

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