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Rochester, MN (KROC AM News) - The Rochester City Council may finally give the green light to one of the most expensive street projects in city history.

The Public Works Dept. is recommending the approval of an $18.3 million bid for the reconstruction of the segment of N. Broadway between Civic Center Dr. and the Silver Lake bridge.

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The bid from Elcor Construction was one of only two that were submitted. It is $1.5-million higher than the city’s estimate.

Besides new pavement, the project will also include water, sanitary sewer and stormwater replacement. That portion of the project is about a fourth of the overall project cost, which is nearly $24-million.

The council rejected an earlier round of bids last year because they were $5-million higher than estimated.

That led to a decision to remove planned artwork, ornamental fencing, and large, decorative signs at bus stops.

The project schedule was also modified to reduce the construction phase and overall impacts to businesses and motorists by nearly one year.

Assessments to property owners in the project zone are expected to total more than $1.7-million. The Public Works Dept. wants to “evaluate the current economic state and discuss the possibility of providing a longer payment period and/or possible deferment of interest for a period of time.”

The council could reject the bids. If it does, the department says:
“We would need to anticipate a price escalation, or would need to complete a pavement preservation project in the next two years.”

News update:  Lawsuit may be filed over problems with downtown Rochester parking ramp.

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