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Aldermen Pave the Way for Sidewalk Along Central Avenue

The Oak Forest City Council approved a more than $55,000 sidewalk construction project from 147th Street to 159th Street along Central Avenue at its Oct. 9 meeting. Work is scheduled to begin Oct. 22.

Walking from 147th Street to 159th Street along Central Avenue is about to get a whole lot easier for Oak Forest residents, after aldermen Tuesday approved a contract with Lorusso Cement Contractors, Inc., and the city by the Oak Forest City Council.

At the council's Tuesday, Oct. 9 meeting, the council approved the contract, in the amount of $55,385 for the sidewalk work.

“We will have continuous sidewalk from 147th Street to 159th Street,” Kuspa said.

According to Kuspa, who was speaking for City Administrator Troy Ishler, who was absent from the meeting due attendance at a conference, the work will cost more than the $50,000 grant the city received from the Illinois Department of Economic & Commerce Opportunity.

“Troy is going to go back and try to get an additional $5,385 to finish the sidewalk project with only grant money,” Kuspa said. “He feels very confident he will get the project covered by the grant money.”

Kuspa added that should the city not be able to get the additional grant money, Oak Forest has enough money in its sidewalk escrow fund to cover the work.

The sidewalk work was put out to bid in two steps, Ishler wrote in a packet to the board. The first part was for work from James Drive to Independence Drive only, while the second bid was for the same stretch of land, along with an additional gap in front of the Jewel property. The final bid accepted by the board from Lorusso was for the latter.

The work is scheduled to begin Oct. 22 and should be complete by Nov. 21 of this year.  

See what else the aldermen have been up to:

  • Sidewalk Coming Soon to 151st Street
  • Flood Relief Coming Soon for Sara Ann Residents
Michael M. October 11, 2012 at 04:21 PM
I have a huge question and maybe the Patch reporters can help. This sidewalk will be 12 blocks long at the cost of $55,000. The sidewalk to be installed at 151st Street from Condado to the existing sidewalk is only about a block long, but will cost OVER $69,000. Why such a large difference in the cost? It appears that we are paying way too much for the 151st St sidewalk. So we have $69,000 per block versus $4,583 per block.
Mike Ziak October 12, 2012 at 03:31 AM
Short answer is, its cheaper to do bigger projects than smaller ones. Contractors get discounts on material costs for larger volumes, but they also have to mobilize men and equipment to the site. All of those factor into what the unit costs for a project come too. The more quantity, the more you can spread out the costs and still allow the contractor to make a profit. Projects with less quantity will see higher unit costs as the contractor still has to factor in a profit, but doesnt have a lot to spread those costs over.
Tired of the B.S. October 12, 2012 at 05:49 AM
So why does one block cost $69,000 and another cost $4583? Don't you guys watch American Pickers? Bundle things for a better price.
Mike Ziak October 12, 2012 at 12:13 PM
If they would have bundled the sidewalks on 151st, by extending them say all the way down to Ridgeland, the cost per block would have been cheaper. But when you build something in a knee jerk reaction to an accident, you will always pay through the nose. Its the government way.
Michael M. October 12, 2012 at 02:06 PM
Mike-why would the difference be so large? We all understand what you are talking about, but this difference seems way to large. I also agree about the knee jerk reaction; the traffic light is costing $250,000 and had nothing to do with the accident, according to the accident and SMART report. Keep spending in a wasteful manner and we will all be broke, until they add another tax.

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