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Ferris works hard to improve city

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DIANA BUCKLEY
Ellis County Press

FERRIS -- In a meeting on Monday, August 7, the Ferris City Council found itself in the enviable position of being able to choose between concrete paving and asphalt paving for its long-awaited street improvements.

'I thought concrete would come in at $5 million,' said Director of Public Works Charlie Joe James. 'I think concrete streets are the way to go. I didn't think we'd be able to make this decision.'

The low bid for concrete paving, from JRJ Paving of Dallas, was in the amount of $3,470,956.00, with 450 calendar days to complete the project. According to James, the city had budgeted $3,200,000.00 for the job. 'If we could come up with the extra $200,000,' James said, 'Concrete is of course the answer.'

Consulting Engineer Mark Hill says the bid includes approximately five percent extra for contingencies. 'If we watch it,' he stated, 'And don't pullout the railroad tracks, for instance, (the city could save up to $170,000).' Hill indicated that asphalt paving would have an expected life span of five to seven years, while concrete should last approximately 20 years.

'There's 450 days,' said Alderman Scott Born. 'If we can't address it in this year's budget, we may have to do part next year.'

The council voted unanimously to award the contract to JRJ Paving for concrete, rather than to APAC-Texas of Dallas, who submitted the low bid for asphalt paving. APAC-Texas' bid was in the amount of $2,672,602.00, approximately 23% lower.

In other action, the council awarded a contract for installation of 12-inch and 8-inch PVC water line to Mid State Utilities of Waco. Mid State submitted the lowest bid, in the amount of $329,030.00 with 120 calendar days to complete the project.

Both projects are subsidized by grant funds.

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