‘Jug Handle’ Bridge project about 25% complete

By on December 7, 2019

At an informational meeting attended by about 30 people Thursday night in Rodanthe, NCDOT resident engineer Pablo Hernandez reported that the Rodanthe “Jug Handle” Bridge project is now one quarter complete and has cost nearly $75 million — about half the overall price tag — as of Nov. 22.

The bridge is expected to be completed by early 2021, but Hernandez, referring to Hurricane Dorian and other recent storms, warned that, “As we’ve all seen over the past few months, the weather can have a significant impact.” Hernandez also told residents they should expect short-term lane closures over the next few months.

The bridge is designed to be a long-term transportation solution to severe storms that cause breaches on NC-12. NCDOT is raising NC-12 onto a 2.4-mile bridge that extends between the southern end of the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge over the Pamlico Sound and Rodanthe. After the bridge is constructed, the existing NC-12 in the refuge will be removed and the land returned to the refuge.

On hand at the Dec. 5 informational meeting at the Rodanthe-Waves-Salvo Community Center were Diane Wilson, a senior public involvement officer with NCDOT; Hernandez; David Hering, design build project engineer; and John Conforti, senior project manager.

Questions came from those in attendance as well as from residents’ online submissions. A number of those concerned the potential removal of sandbags along NC-12, which can help protect against severe flooding. Wilson confirmed that while sandbags are in place at this time to protect the road, they will be removed after the old bridge is removed.

Wilson also discussed NCDOT’s decision to build a roundabout off the bridge instead of a T-type intersection. The latter will create a long line of vehicles during the busy summer months and in the future will require a traffic signal, which will in turn require maintenance during high winds and power outages, Wilson explained.

A work trestle at the north end of the bridge is nearly erected, and construction on that end will start soon, Hernandez said. The earthwork for the roundabout is underway, and paving and concrete work will continue through the winter.

One topic that seemed to be on the mind of some during the meeting is NC-12’s ability to withstand the storms that often seem to batter Hatteras and its highway. Residents at the meeting complained they found driving on NC-12 at night on Hatteras “scary,” as there is sometimes no road shoulder and sand is strewn across the road at several points.

Wes Hutchinson of Mirlo Beach brought up concerns regarding long-range planning to deal with increased risks of hurricanes and other storms. He also raised the issue of NCDOT’s budget problems, and asked if NCDOT would continue to be able to conduct post-storm cleanup in a timely manner.

Conforti, the project manager, said that North Carolina State University and the U.S. Navy are preparing a series of reports on sand dunes and erosions that will aid NCDOT in long-term planning.

In regard to budgetary concerns, Hernandez responded that NCDOT service levels would be maintained. “Our intent is not to do anything different. NC-12 is still a vital access road for people and law enforcement,” he asserted. “We are still going to go out and do the right thing.”

The next public information meeting will be held on March 5, 2020 from 6-8pm at the Rodanthe-Waves-Salvo Community Center.

Dare County Animal Shelter

Sealed bids for completion of the Dare County Animal Shelter will be received on February 11, 2020, in the Dare County Administration Building, 954 Marshall C. Collins Drive, Manteo, NC, for 01-Fencing, 03- Concrete, 04-Masonry, 05-Metals/ Steel, 06-Casework, 07-Roofing, 07-Caulking, 08-Glass and Glazing, 08-Doors, Frames and Hardware, 08-Overhead Doors, 09-Drywall, 09-Flooring, 09-Painting, 10- Specialties, 12-Furnishings, 21-Fire Protection, 23-Mechanical & Plumbing, 26-Electrical, 31-Sitework and 32-Landscaping.

This project will be bid and awarded in accordance with North Carolina law. Sealed proposals from Contractors will be received until 1:00 p.m. All bidders must submit for prequalification by 2:00pm on 2/3/2020. Bids submitted by non-prequalified bidders will not be considered. All bids will be opened and read aloud starting at 2:00 p.m. of the bid day. Bids must be delivered in person and on the supplied Bid Form and include a bid deposit worth 5% of the total bid value. Electronic and faxed bids will NOT be accepted or reviewed. All times are local prevailing times.

Information requests concerning the project shall be submitted in writing to: Alex Palagyi of The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company via email (alex.palagyi@whiting-turner.com)

Bidding material, prequalification material, and complete plans and specifications may be obtained from the Whiting-Turner Building Connected site and will be available until the bid due date. All subcontractors are responsible for emailing Alex Palagyi (alex.palagyi@whiting-turner.com) for access to the Building Connected site.

The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company and Dare County reserve the right to reject any and all bids, waive informalities and irregularities in bidding, and to accept bids which are considered to be in the best interest of the County. The Whiting Turner Contracting Company and Dare County also reserve the right to require any bidder to submit information needed to determine if said bidder is responsible within the meaning of N.C. Gen. Stat. 143-129.

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