By Kip Tabb | Outer Banks Voice on August 11, 2021
At the third meeting of the NC 12 Task Force, held on Aug. 11 at the Dare County Administrative Building, the complexity of maintaining NC12 on Hatteras Island was the focus of attention.
As stakeholders discussed confronting the challenges of the road now and in the future, two concerns in particular emerged: the cost of a bridge over the seven “hotspots” that have been identified as well as environmental concerns. There was consensus, though, that the S-Curves, which are listed as a hotspot, will be resolved when the Jug Handle Bridge opens next year.
Nonetheless, the rate of erosion in the six remaining areas highlighted the urgency of tackling the issue. Dr. Reide Corbett, Dean of the ECU Coastal Studies Institute Campus, briefed the Task Force on the how quickly the shoreline is retreating in the remaining hotspots.
The greatest retreat, he noted, was located at the Pea Island Visitors Center— 4.8 meters/year — and in Avon at 4.9 meters/year. The least was in Buxton where Dare County funded a beach nourishment project. The county will be nourishing the beach in Avon as well.
The Wednesday meeting focused on the first of the hotspots, the Canal Zone just south of the Basnight Bridge. Although the rate of erosion in the Canal Zone is not as high as other areas (2.5 meters/year by the year 2030), NC12 in that area would be threatened.
With the discussion focusing on short-term and long-term solutions, the cost of building a bridge in Pamlico Sound emerged. To provide some basis for computing that, Win Bridgers, NCDOT Deputy Division Engineer, provided figures for the Jug Handle Bridge project.
“The bridge at Rodanthe is 2.46 miles long, $154 million,” he said. Using that figure, he extrapolated the cost of a bridge in the sound. “Just so you know, if you say, ‘Oh let’s build a bridge like Rodanthe,’ it’s $74 million per mile. That gives you some idea of magnitude.”
Bridgers was asked about the cost of a bridge-in-place, a bridge using the existing right of way and not going into the sound. “Obviously it would be less,” he said, noting the Richard Etheridge Bridge’s estimated $20 million per mile price tag.
It became apparent during the discussion, however, that a bridge-in-place would not address the long-term issues confronting NC12. Although the upfront costs of a series of bridges-in-place would be considerably less than a longer bridge in the sound, there would be a series of ongoing construction projects needed to keep the road open.
Corbett also pointed out that if a bridge-in-place was built, shoreline retreat was happening on the soundside as well as along the ocean shore — raising the possibility that losing the roadbed or damaging the bridge exists from the ocean and the waters of the sound.
And there was consensus that the idea of a 17.2-mile bridge bypassing Pea Island and connecting the Basnight Bridge and Rodanthe with a $1 billion price tag was an impractical solution, even though it was possible that over time, the same amount of money would be used for a series of shorter interconnecting bridges.
There was also discussion about permitting a bridge constructed in Pamlico Sound, but concerns were raised about how to minimize the impact of the bridge and construction on subaquatic vegetation (SAV), one of the primary food sources for migratory waterfowl.
And the subject of beach nourishment as a means to preserve the roadway also arose. As a temporary measure to give a permanent solution time to be constructed, the National Park Service has permitted beach nourishment in the past.
ADVERTISEMENT FOR RE-BID: Barnhill Contracting Company will receive sealed proposals for the Kill Devil Hills – EMS/Fire Facility (EMS-1) project on Wednesday, February 08, 2023 @ 2:00pm for the following packages:
BP 400 – Turnkey Masonry, BP 505 – Light Gauge Metal Trusses, BP 833 – Overhead Doors, BP 925 – Drywall/Framing, BP 2200 – Plumbing, BP 2300 – HVAC, BP 2600 – Electrical
Scopes of work may be added and/or deleted at the discretion of the Construction Manager.
Bid Location and Time: Bid opening will be held in the Barnhill Contracting Rocky Mount Main Conference Room: 800 Tiffany Bvld, Rocky Mount, NC 27804. Time is as follows: Wednesday, February 08, 2023 at 2:00pm.
Barnhill Contracting Company will receive, open, and read publicly all bids received in person in the training room and listed with the virtual viewing at the link to be posted on Barnhill’s Plan Room.
Bids will not be accepted from bidders that are not pre-qualified. No facsimile or email submissions are permitted. Sealed bids are to be hand delivered to the bid opening location noted above or mailed Sealed Bids can be delivered before 9:00am the day of the bid to the Barnhill Contracting Company Office at 800 Tiffany Blvd., Suite 200 Rocky Mount, NC 27804. Attention “Clint Hardison.”
Bid Documents can be viewed or downloaded through Barnhill’s online Building Division Plan Room (https://app.buildingconnected.com/public/54da832ce3edb5050017438b).
All Bidders are strongly encouraged to include opportunities for HUB participation wherever possible in their respective Bid submission. HUB participation is a part of this contract and must comply with all requirements set forth in the Bid Documents.
The Construction Manager and Owner reserve the right to add pre-qualified bidders. The Construction Manager and Owner reserve the right to reject any and all bids. Should you require additional direction, please call Barnhill Contracting Company, (Clint Hardison – 252-802-0740).
Clint Hardison is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Dare County – Kill Devil Hills EMS #01 / FS #14 – 2 PM Re-Bid Opening
Time: Feb 8, 2023 02:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
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Meeting ID: 874 0991 8806