Low bid drives Cumberland's Route 88 improvement cost down to about $4M

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CUMBERLAND — Although the Town Council voted last December to borrow up to $4.5 million for improvements to Foreside Road (Route 88), the low bid for the work will reduce the cost to between $4 million and $4.1 million, Town Manager Bill Shane said Monday.

The Town Council is expected to accept the bid by Storey Brothers on Monday, April 12. The company submitted a bid of $3.79 million for the base price plus alternates. The total project cost includes items like contingencies.

The reduction in the anticipated project cost also shaves the impact on next year’s bond payment by about $25,000 to $35,000, Shane said.

Voters last month narrowly rejected a referendum challenging the council’s decision to float a bond, 941-915.

The work is due to begin in late June and finish by July 1, 2011. The drainage portion of the project will run from the Falmouth town line to about 600 feet east of Teal Drive, and shoulder widening will reach from the Falmouth town line to Schooner Ridge.

The current road is paved over concrete. The paved portion is 24- to 26-feet wide and 3 to 5 inches in depth, and the concrete layer is 18- to 20-feet wide and between 7 inches and 9 inches deep. The proposed normal section of roadway would have two 11-foot travel lanes, each with 5-foot shoulders.

While runoff sedimentation caused by erosion carries pollutants to the ocean, the proposed work is intended to reduce pollution by curbing the roadway in problem areas.

Alex Lear can be reached at 373-9060 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net.

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A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.