An early start to annual alley, street and water main reconstruction work in Forest Park is expected following action by the village council April 9.

Village Administrator Tim Gillian said he hopes to start street and alley resurfacing projects later this month or early next month after holding preconstruction meetings last week. Last year, similar projects did not begin until July.

Streets to be resurfaced are the 600 block of Marengo and the 1000 and 1100 blocks of Elgin Avenue. The project also includes replacing four-inch water mains in the 600 block of Marengo and the 1000 block of Elgin with 8-inch versions, a continuation of an effort to replace all 4-inch water mains with 8-inch versions to increase water pressure and improve fire protection. As streets over the smaller water mains are targeted for resurfacing, village officials are incorporating the water main upgrade to avoid resurfacing the street twice. 

Alleys to be resurfaced are in the 900 block between Hannah and Circle Avenues and the 1000 block between Circle and Marengo Avenues.

The village council voted 5-0 April 9 to award the contract for the street and water main project to Uno Construction Company Inc., the lowest of five bidders. Uno Construction’s bid of $722,326.25 was $173,000 less than the village engineer’s estimate. The project will be paid from the water fund and the Village Improvement Program (VIP) fund, a debt service fund committed to public infrastructure improvements.

On April 9, the village council also voted 5-0 to awarding the contract for the alley project to J. Nardulli Concrete Inc., the lowest of 11 bidders. Nardulli Concrete’s bid of $595,345.92 was $76,000 less than the village engineer’s estimate. The project will be paid from the VIP fund.

Village Administrator Tim Gillian said both firms have performed similar work for the village in the past with Nardulli Concrete receiving the contract for alley projects last year.  

Gillian said it was “hard to say” why bids came in lower than estimated but speculated the village’s early call for bids might have encouraged companies looking for work to submit more competitive bids.

“Sometimes if you bid early, you may get a better bid,” he said.

Gillian said village officials will consider using the $249,000 difference between the estimates and contracts to add a third alley project this year.

“If we can add an alley, we will make that determination,” he added.

Specifications for the alley projects include reconstruction of the alleys with Portland cement concrete pavement, subbase granular material and storm sewer and drainage structures. Driveways, curbs and sidewalks also will be removed and replaced.

Specifications for the street resurfacing projects include hot mix asphalt surface removal, leveling binder, surface course and binder course. Parkways also will be restored and curbs and sidewalks will be removed and replaced.

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