BBWSD nears agreement on Lincoln Road improvements

Published on Thu, May 19, 2011 by Jeremy Schwartz

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The Birch Bay Water and Sewer District (BBWSD) board is about one meeting away from approving a contract with Lynden-based Stremler Gravel to complete waterline work alongside Whatcom County’s planned Lincoln Road improvements.

Though Stremler’s price is about $40,000 more than what BBWSD staff budgeted for the project, district assistant manager Dan Eisses told the board at its May 12 meeting Stremler’s price is reasonable given the work involved.

Eisses said he would prepare a contract with Stremler and a resolution for the board to vote on at its next meeting, May 26.

Stremler submitted a $190,824 bid to the district that included $84,560 for pulling the new waterline through the old one beneath Lincoln Road, a process called sliplining, and $10,500 for fire hydrant replacement.

The district received an $88,000 estimate from Arlington-based Trenchless, Inc., for just the sliplining work, and Eisses explained that the cost for fire hydrant replacement would be the same if BBWSD crews did the work.

Whatcom County public works awarded Stremler a $2.2 million contract for the road improvements earlier this month. The work is slated to start in late May and last until October.

Eisses said hiring Stremler to do the necessary waterline upgrades while the company performs road improvements will save the district money and prevent unnecessarily long road closures. If district staff were unable to contract with Stremler, BBWSD crews would have to close the road for about a week before roadwork starts and hire their own traffic flaggers.

Eisses said the district could use money set aside for computer control system upgrades to pay for the cost difference between the budgeted and estimated costs.

As part of the county’s work, Stremler crews will widen Lincoln Road between Harborview and Shintaffer to 12-foot lanes with 8-foot shoulders.

Dedicated left-turn lanes at intersections, wetland mitigation and stormwater treatment facilities will also be installed.
Local residents will still be able to reach their homes and the two businesses along Lincoln Road. Anderson Road will serve as a detour route for east/west traffic.

For more information, contact Cecelia Thomas at 360/715-7450 or