CASPER, Wyo. — Knife River, Inc. was contracted in 2018 to conduct a variety of street improvements in Casper.
The cost of conducting all of the improvements ran $126,440.69 over the original contract amount, which exceeded the contingency funding set aside for the project as well.
The project included improvement at these streets:
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- South Jackson Street
- East Third Street and East Fifth Street near the Wyoming Medical Center
- 15th Street between South Wolcott and Oakrest Avenue
Improvements included the following:
- mill and overlay
- replacement of cast-iron water main pipes
- replacement of sanitary sewer mains
- installing storm sewer catch basins
- installing ADA accessible ramps at various intersections
- sidewalk, curb and gutter repairs
According to a memo from Public Services Director Andrew Beamer in the city council’s Tuesday, Nov. 12 work session work packet, the cost overruns came about due to many items being underbid by the engineering consultant (ECS Engineers), construction methods differing from those originally planned and expanding the some aspects of the project.
“It sounds like it pretty much is related to quantities,” Councilman Bob Hopkins said, referencing the additional materials the projects ended up requiring.
The total project cost was $1,805,355.87 including the amount over the contracted bid.
The city council discussed how to cover the additional costs.
$70,846.42 in remaining contingency funds for the project is proposed to be used along with $24,329.78 from water fund reserves and $31,264.29 in 1% No. 16 sales tax funds which are allocated for street improvements.
“This is abnormal in that we’ve expended all the contingency and we need more money,” Beamer told the council.
Councilman Steve Freel said the project should have been halted once the contingency fund for the project had been exceeded.
Hopkins said it is the first time he can recall such a situation where contingency funding set aside for a project had been exceeded.
“It sounds to me like we’re stuck with paying for it,” Councilman Mike Huber said.
Council indicated that they support approval of the change order which they will vote on at their next meeting.