By Nate Smith
WASHINGTON — The Daviess County Commissioners had a special meeting Tuesday to make contract changes to the Cannelburg Road project.
The commissioners voted 2-0 to move $487,000 from construction to engineering services and right-of-way purchases for the second phase of the project along CR 900E. Commissioner Michael Taylor was absent.
The Cannelburg Road project will widen the heavily-used road and create buggy lanes for local Amish to use, making the road safer.
Officials from the Indiana Department of Transportation spoke with the commissioners via a conference call before the vote was taken, questioning why the transfer was needed.
County Highway Superintendent Phil Cornelius said the transfer was to plan for future extension of the road project. Currently, construction for the second phase of the road is set from CR 600N to CR 800N. Cornelius told INDOT officials engineering plans will be completed for up to CR 1250N and construction could begin once more funding is found.
Cornelius said the county wants to have the plans in place should more funding be found for the last miles of construction.
“The idea is to be ready,” Cornelius said.
INDOT signed off on the changes.
“I’m comfortable with it,” INDOT Chief of Staff Troy Woodruff said after quizzing Cornelius and the commissioners about the changes.
Toward the end of the meeting, Cornelius said four companies have made bids for the first phase of the project, set to begin later this month from CR 450N to 550N.
Bid estimates ranged from $2.6 million to $3.2 million for the first phase. The low bidder currently is Milestone Contractors of Columbus, who bid $2.6 million. Cornelius said bids are 10 percent lower than previous estimates, and some of those funds could be used for the second phase of the project.