County saves on road resurfacing

Published: Saturday, January 27, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 27, 2007 at 12:54 a.m.
The current phase of Alachua County's road resurfacing program is coming at a good time to save money - oil prices have stabilized so the costs may be eased somewhat.
For example, a current project has come in at a lower cost than anticipated, said Dave Cerlanek, Alachua County engineer and assistant public works director.
"We saw quite a bit of savings on the County Road 225, which is one of the bond projects that is under way now," Cerlanek said. "When the bids came back, they were a little bit lower than expected, which was nice."
The county in 2004 set aside about $9.3 million for four road-resurfacing projects, three of which have been completed: sections of North 53rd Avenue, County Road 236 and SW 20th Avenue.
Cerlanek said work on the final project - SW 8th Avenue from 122nd Street to 75th Street - should begin in the summer.
Meanwhile, the county last year started what will be a $30 million bonding program. CR 225 is one of the first to be done under that. The others were roads in subdivisions.
CR 225 is the road to the Gainesville Raceway. Cerlanek said the work is being fast-tracked so that it will be ready to handle traffic for the Gatornationals March 15-18.
The steep rise in petroleum prices last year that drove up gasoline costs at the pumps also drove up road construction costs since paving materials are made from petroleum.
Now that the costs have come down, some of the future projects might not be as expensive as officials had initially thought. That could help stretch the money to more projects.
"We hope to keep ahead of the game in our budget so that if we get to the end of the list of projects we'll be able to go back to the commission and ask to have a few more projects added," Cerlanek said.
Several other projects are about to go out to bid including CR 340 near High Springs and CR 1474 between U.S. 301 and Windsor.
Local contractors worked on several roads that have already been done, Cerlanek said.
Cindy Swirko can be reached at 374-5024 or

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