Lafayette Highway

By the end of October (at the latest) anyone driving down LaFayette Highway in Roanoke will have a much smoother ride.

Roanoke City Council took its final step to approve the repaving project for the road Monday when it voted to accept the nearly $450,000 price tag for the project.

The project was designed by Harmon Engineering, with the contract for the actual roadwork going to Gary Ingram Grading and Paving out of Dadeville. Harmon will notify Gary Ingram this week that the company has been awarded the project and is cleared to begin work.

Once Ingram receives the notice to proceed, they will have 21 days to start the project and then 60 days to complete it once they have begun. That timeline puts the end of the completion window sometime around the end of October of this year.

To help pay for the project, the city borrowed $150,000 from First Bank of Alabama at an interest rate of 3.9 percent. That loan will be repaid over the next two years at $79,500 per year.

The remainder of the money for the repaving will come from the city's coffers.

The actual total cost is $448,571, with $425,549 going to Ingram and the remainder going to Harmon for oversight and testing while the project is ongoing.

The resurfacing will cover both lanes of LaFayette Highway from Main Street south to the bridge spanning the railroad tracks near the Superior Gas office, a stretch of approximately 1.1 miles.

The LaFayette Highway project was the biggest paving project approved by the council Monday, but it was not the only one.

The council also voted to accept the $308,055 bid from Chris Clark Grading and Paving out of Lanett for the eight-street project that will be primarily funded by a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

Chris Clark was the lowest of three bids submitted to the city for the project that will provide for resurfacing of Chemical Avenue, Cotney Circle, Cotney Line, Gaston Street, Mulberry Street, Hill Circle and portions of Seymour Drive and Satterwhite Street.

'Sloppy concrete work'

Roanoke resident Martha Bailey addressed the council Monday asking them to redo the curbing in front of her residence on Brookside Drive near Roanoke Country Club.

The curbing was done as part of a project approved in 2016, according to Bailey, but the work was not uniform and left several jagged concrete edges along the roadside.

Bailey presented each council member and the mayor with images of the work, and for the most part, they agreed it is substandard.

"I do not have curbing," Bailey said. "I have inferior, sloppy concrete work."

She also asserted the city should not be stuck with the bill for correcting that problem, and those costs should fall to the contractor that did the work.

Council member Mack Arthur Bell rebuffed Bailey's request to have the work re-done, citing the $4,520 cost for that portion of the project.

"I'm totally against that," Bell said. "I wish I had curbing on my side of town."

Mayor Mike Fisher asked street department superintendent Nick Johnson to make an effort to correct the curbing problem, specifically the jagged edges near the street.

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