Fenton Twp. — A portion of Whittaker Road in Fenton Township was originally approved to be paved in 2019. However, paving the section of the dirt road from Harp Drive to Linden Road would cost at least $100,000 more than township officials anticipated, so the project was rejected at the Monday, Feb 3 meeting.
This portion of Whittaker Road leads to the entrances and exits to a section of the Linden County Park.
According to Fenton Township meeting minutes, in 2018, the Board of Trustees approved the paving as a 2019 local road project. It was based on a $150,000 cost estimate from the Genesee County Road Commission (GCRC) and the use of $90,200 in supplemental allocation funds from the GCRC. The township would have paid approximately $60,000.
After the GCRC completed the engineering design, the cost estimate increased to $246,660.30. The project was bid out in August 2019, and the GCRC received two bids. The lowest was $343,542.20.
These bids were rejected and it was bid out again in December.
“This time GCRC received nine bids, the lowest of which was $314,006, still more than double the original estimate. GCRC has advised that they do not believe re-bidding the project again will result in any significant cost reduction and has asked the township to decide if they wish to move forward with the project,” according to the minutes.
If the board approved it, the township’s share would have been approximately $250,000, which is more than 70 percent of the 2020 local road improvement budget.
Thomas Broecker, operations manager/deputy clerk, confirmed that the township is responsible for out-of-pocket costs incurred to date, which amounted to approximately $20,000 for tree removal and core sampling. This could be divided between the township and GCRC.
Genesee County Parks & Recreation Commission (GCPR) was contacted to see if they were willing to participate in the cost because the property on both sides of the road belongs to the county park, according to Monday, Feb. 3 meeting minutes. The GCPR director advised that they do not have the budgetary means to absorb the kind of costs being considered.
A few residents attended the Monday, Feb. 3 meeting to complain that the trees had been cut down, but now the road wasn’t going to be paved.
The board decided that the cost was too much and voted to reject the proposal.