Tired of wide trucks constantly getting stuck on Drake Road? Lakewood's Township Committee is all set to award a contract to award a gas tax funded State grant to widen the entire length of Drake Road, FAA News has learned.

Drake Road is currently only 20 feet wide along many portions of the roadway.

Township officials previously applied for a NJDOT Municipal Aid grant for funding to widen this road to 32 feet wide, as well as to reconstruct August Drive with base course and surface course, and Brookfield Drive with base course and surface course along with new sew storm water drainage inlets and recharge pipe.

NJDOT Municipal Aid is an annual state program which awards grants to municipalities to improve local roads, thereby enabling local governments to significantly reduce or eliminate reliance on local property tax dollars to support their projects. This fund program is part of Transportation Trust Fund reauthorization in October 2016, which raised the gas tax.

The proposed project included improvements to the conditions and safety for both pedestrian and vehicular traffic along the project limits:

• Road removal and paving of these roadways

• Replacement of curb, installation of ADA compliant pedestrian ramps and truncated domes, crosswalks,

• Repair/replacement of sidewalk as required,

• Upgrading storm water inlets with storm water compliant curb pieces and bicycle safe grates,

• Upgrading signage to provide breakaway poles and MUTCD compliant signage, and

• Installation of pavement markings and striping as required

Township officials estimated the construction costs to be as follows:

Drake Road / Ridgeway Place $1,117,589.61 (includes relocation of 26 utility poles at $3,500 each, for a total of $91,000)

Brookfield Drive $533,323.33

August Drive $429,854.26

Total Estimated Cost of Improvement

Construction Cost: $2,080,767.21

Design Engineering: $205,076.72

Construction Inspection and Material Testing: $307,615.08

Total Estimated Cost and Requested Amount: $2,593,459.01

As the news was very first broken here on FAA News, the Township was awarded only $502,471, plus an Urban Aid allotment of $52,083, for a total of $554,554.

As the awarded amount is significantly less than the total amount requested, Township officials were forced to scale down from the original scope of the hoped for project.

Colliers Engineering & Design, the Township’s Consulting Engineer, designed a project that includes widening Drake Road to approximately 26-27 feet along the entire stretch of the roadway, milling, paving, storm drainage work, curb, ADA ramps, striping and other miscellaneous construction improvements.

Sidewalk along the entire roadway does not appear to be included, however, sidewalks will be installed at the intersections where they do not currently exist.

The design of the project was recently completed and Township officials solicited bids from prospective contractors.

3 bids were received and open last week.

The Township Committee is all set this Thursday to award this road improvement contract to Earle Asphalt Company of Farmingdale, New Jersey for $591,313.13.

The Township's resolution of contract award indicates that the Township intends to commence work as soon as possible and that all work on this contract shall be completed within 75 calendar days.

The award shall further be subjected to the securing of necessary State, Federal or Local permits governing the work.

The contract is required to comply with the requirements of Affirmative Action), New Jersey Prevailing Wage Act, and Americans with Disabilities Act of 1999.

As previously reported here on FAA News, back in February 2023, Township officials bonded (i.e. took out a loan) $19 million to help fund some pretty major infrastructure improvements, including the Ridgeway Place And Drake Road Roadway Improvements Project.

Most of Drake Road already has Zoning and Planning Board approvals which require the DEVELOPERS to widen their frontage of the road to 32 feet wide with sidewalks.

Though it is nice to see the Township embark on such a major road improvement project, it is unclear why the Township chose to expend our resources to improve a road which the developers should be required to improve as they improve their property.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just another case of our committee doing special favors to connected developers and school owners as they save them big bucks.