Kalamazoo spends $560K for more dredging; postpones street projects

Article Image
Joel Bissell| MLive.com

Posted February 20, 2020

By Brad Devereaux | bdeverea@mlive.com

KALAMAZOO, MI — The city of Kalamazoo will spend an additional $560,768.50 for dredging meant to alleviate flooding following heavy rain events.

The Kalamazoo City Commission approved the additional cost at its Feb. 17 meeting.

The expenditure is in addition to the more than $1 million the city approved in 2018 for dredging of the ponds and creek, which are part of the city’s storm-water system, that are located in areas that are prone to flooding during rain events.

In November 2018, the Kalamazoo City Commission approved a Contract with GRO America in the amount of $1,084,800 for the dredging the Crosstown Ponds and cleaning and inspection of the Axtell Creek culverts.

Now, more than a year later, the city said the estimated quantity of material to be removed from the Axtell Creek culverts was discovered to be underestimated during construction, and a decision was made to continue to remove the material above the original estimated contract quantity, according to a recommendation presented to city commissioners.

“To mitigate an additional inaccurate estimate, the decision was made to track additional quantity of removed material so a single accurate quantity may be determined,” the recommendation provided to commissioners states.

The excess cost of the project was not included in the 2020 capital improvement plan, the city said, and funding will be made available through the following sources:

  • $280,000: Local Streets 2020 Capital Improvement Projects from the deferment of the following streets projects: Weaver, Fulford, Broadway, and James
  • $150,000: The reallocation of funds from excess available grant funds
  • $130,769: Major Streets 2019 Capital Improvement Projects from project funds

The street projects mentioned needed to be postponed for construction sequencing or lead service line replacements, Kalamazoo Department of Public Services Director James Baker said. Funding will be re-appropriated once city staff aligns the construction schedules, Baker said. The project schedule allowed for the funding transfers, he said.

The Weaver and Broadway projects were postponed due to construction sequencing and schedule, Baker said. The James and Fulford projects were postponed due to requirements prior to paving, Baker said.

The city said in 2019 the dredging project was meant to restore the Crosstown Ponds back to their original design capacity. The ponds are meant to help reduce the impact of rain storms lasting a full 24 hours, and with a total rainfall amount between two and three inches.

Source: mlive.com