Sidewalk construction to begin in June

By Laurie Hamame -



New sidewalk construction will begin in June to make walking or biking to and from school safe and convenient.

Oberlin city council approved a $297,920 award to Smith Paving and Excavating of Norwalk on May 7. It was the lowest of three bids received for the job.

The project cost estimate, prepared by Parsons-Brinckerhoff, a New York City construction engineering company, is $301,554.

The city was awarded a $500,000 Safe Routes to School grant in 2010 to build bike racks, covered awnings, and lighted crosswalks at the district’s four schools. A leftover balance of $220,686 will go toward new sidewalks.

Public works director Jeff Baumann said he made sure the bid conforms with the Ohio Department of Transportation’s requirements.

A $445,580 funding request was submitted in November 2010 to construct improvements at 16 locations around the city. Design work took nearly two and a half years to complete and the project list was winnowed down to 12.

Just under $36,000 of city money was spent to acquire permanent right-of-ways from 15 parcels and temporary right of ways — during construction only — from four.

This spring, Baumann and city engineer Randall Roberts used a template from ODOT to select an engineering and inspection firm. A $48,578 contract with KS Associates of Elyria is in the process of being finalized.

The city’s total cost for the construction phase is $125,812.

“We budgeted $246,343 for construction and inspection so more than adequate funding is available for our share of project costs,” Baumann said.

The Safe Routes to School project construction includes:

• 60 feet of sidewalk infill on West College Street.

• A 530-foot sidewalk on East College from Oberlin Road to Thomas Street.

• 1,200 feet of sidewalk on North Prospect from Grace Lutheran Church to Union Street.

• 300 feet of sidewalk infill on North Prospect between Rt. 511 and West College Street. A school zone flasher system will also be installed for Prospect Elementary School.

• 700 feet of sidewalk at the northwest corner of West Hamilton and South Professor streets.

• A 140-foot sidewalk on East College Street from the bike path to Shipherd Circle. A crosswalk and ramps will be installed on both sides of East College.

• 450 feet of sidewalk on East Vine Street between Park and Pleasant streets.

• 1,100 feet of sidewalk on Lincoln Street from Professor to Washington streets.

• 350 feet of sidewalk on Thomas Street and another 300 feet of sidewalk on Lincoln Street between Professor and Rt. 58.

• 530 feet of sidewalk on Smith Street between Rt. 58 and Pleasant Street.

Laurie Hamame can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @HamameNews on Twitter.


By Laurie Hamame