A lengthy construction project at the intersection of 132nd Street and Giles Road is frustrating area residents, business owners and the Sarpy County Board of Commissioners.
Tab Construction, who submitted the lowest bid for the project, closed the road on July 17, 2017. The contract specified the grading, pipe placement and paving should be completed in 75 working days. Holidays, weekends and days when the weather was not conducive to construction work are excluded from the count.
“This 75 working day project is about to cross 300 actual days,” said Sarpy County Board Vice Chair Jim Warren. “We’ve gotten a number of complaints that this seems to be a never ending project. It’s understandably upsetting for the people who live and work in the area.”
Weather and utility issues did prevent work for a number of days. However, the project crossed the 75 working day mark in early December, as calculated by the State, County and County Construction Administrator. As the contract specified, liquidated damages of $3,117 are being assessed for every working day beyond that date. As of May 5, those damages are $105,978.
Three legs of the intersection reopened on Dec. 15, however, Giles Road to the west of 132nd Street remains closed.
“This project is months behind, and I would expect to see some urgency from the contractor to get it done. But I haven’t seen any urgency from Tab. I would find it extremely difficult to approve any future contract with Tab Construction, and the other commissioners feel the same way,” Warren said.
The County Board of Commissioners must approve all bids over $20,000. The Board can consider a company’s previous performance, reputation and efficiency when awarding a bid, according state statute.
Sarpy County is responsible for 20% of the $1.95 million project, approximately $389,000. The Federal Highway Administration is paying the remaining portion.