Replacement of four aging Roane County bridges and the rehabilitation of a bridge in Fayette County are among several construction contracts awarded by the West Virginia Division of Highways on Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2021.
The replacement projects were part of a bid letting held Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021. The bridge projects will be funded through Gov. Jim Justice’s $2.8 billion Roads to Prosperity construction and maintenance program.
R.K. Construction Inc. was low bidder on a project to replace the Stoney Lonesome Bridge, with a bid of $350,792. The 31-foot, one-lane bridge was built in 1961, was damaged by flooding in 2015 and 2016 and is rated in poor condition.
SMH Construction Company Inc. was low bidder on a project to replace the Tariff Bridge, with a bid of $566,482.43. the 67-foot, two-lane bridge was built in 1927, has numerous cracks and exposed rebar, and is rated in poor condition.
R.K. Construction was also low bidder on a project to replace the Blowntimber #1 bridge, with a bid of $574,692. The 18-foot, one-lane bridge was built in 1968. The abutments and beams are deteriorating and the bridge is rated in poor condition.
Alan Stone Co. Inc. was low bidder on a project to replace the Mud Fork Bridge, with a bid of $363,449.50. The 25-foot, one-lane bridge was built in 1962. The superstructure is deteriorating and the bridge is listed in poor condition.
Wolf Creek Contracting Company was low bidder on a project to rehabilitate the Big Creek Bridge, with a bid of $881,117.75. The bridge is located on WV 16 near Brownsville in Fayette County. The project will be paid for with Turnpike bonds.
Several factors are considered before awarding a bid, including whether a bid falls above or below the WVDOH Engineer’s Estimate and by what percentage. In cases where a bid is above the Engineer’s Estimate, WVDOH must consider the project need, repercussions of not awarding the project, additional funding sources and whether or not sufficient reasons exist for the differences in estimates. Most projects are reviewed, analyzed and awarded within a week of the bid letting, but the process can take longer.
When the Division of Highways has a project that is determined to be best constructed by a contractor, it is processed through the bid letting system. A letting is a scheduled opportunity for contractors to review and bid on several construction projects at one time. Lettings are held either once or twice per month and conducted through the Bid Express System online at www.bidx.comand handled through the Contract Administration Division. Contractors need to subscribe to Bid Express before bids can be accepted on any project.
As the date and time approaches for the deadline of the letting, contractors are expected to place their bids, with complete documentation as necessary. Shortly after the letting, the respective bids are reviewed. All bids are evaluated thoroughly for competitiveness and deemed acceptable through guidelines as approved by policy, reviewed and approved by the FHWA. Award of the contracts is made based on recommendation by our Awards Committee based on the results that evaluation and approval by the Commissioner. Projects are typically awarded to the lowest bidder that has all proper documentation in place.