The City Commission of Arkansas City voted 3-0 to approve a $98,649.18 change order agreement with Walters-Morgan Construction for the new Water Treatment Facility that includes work to improve a sewer relay located at Fourth Street and Washington Avenue.

City of Arkansas City logoThe sanitary sewer located in that area originally was clay tile. Among other things, it serves the current water treatment plant.

“When we exposed that sewer, it actually collapsed,” said Public Works Director Eric Broce.

The replacement of the sewer lines includes approximately 350 feet of new pipe. “That involved a lot of negotiation,” he said.

Broce estimated the age of the pipes that were replaced at 80 to 90 years old.

The total value is more than $30,000, but it was negotiated down to around $18,000, he explained.

This project still is being worked on and Washington Avenue remains closed at Fourth Street so the construction can proceed.

“Fourth and Washington, you need to go check it out, because it is a big hole,” City Manager Nick Hernandez told the commissioners.

“You can see all the lines … and you can see that little saddle for the 2-inch line. Why was that ever allowed to be done?”

The tie-in will take place on Nov. 26, while Creekstone Farms Premium Beef is not in operation.

Broce said that during excavation of the intersection, workers also found an underground Westar Energy line that never was marked, as well as some unanticipated concrete — even an old bridge-like structure.

“You never know what you’re going to find until you’re in there,” Broce said.

Broce said there should be very few additional changes going forward.

In projects of this magnitude, there generally are multiple change orders. To stay under 3 percent in added costs is considered “good.”

But the new Water Treatment Facility project has only seen a 0.69-percent increase, including the change orders that were approved.

Mayor Dan Jurkovich and Commissioner Charles Tweedy III were absent from the meeting.

In other business, the commissioners:

  • met at 5:15 p.m. as part of the Public Building Commission, and voted 6-0 to elect Mike Munson as the new chair and Angie Bruce as vice chair. Former chair David Billings also was in attendance. Munson has served as vice chair for several years. This was Bruce’s first meeting. Public Building Commissioner Shandon Weston was absent.
  • unanimously approved the Nov. 7 regular meeting minutes.
  • unanimously approved a change order with Andale Construction for the 15th Street reconstruction project, totaling $14, 384. Andale will deliver and install 4-inch compacted concrete paving overlay for approximately 130 feet over the existing 15th Street bridge, which originally was going to be replaced as part of a separate project.
  • heard an update from Broce and Hernandez regarding the new clearwell, which is now complete. The project came in under budget.
  • held a pair of executive sessions totaling 25 minutes for consultation with City Attorney Tamara Niles, which would be deemed privileged in the attorney-client relationship, to discuss a contract for Direct Primary Care clinic services. No action was taken after.