Pottawatomie and Wabaunsee counties met briefly Monday to discuss impending improvements to the Belvue Bridge.
Earlier this month, the two counties learned that $6.4 million in federal money had been secured by Sen. Jerry Moran to go toward bridge rehabilitation, one of several Congressionally directed spending requests in Kansas. Updated cost estimates were presented Monday on both options the counties are considering.
“$9.8 million for a new deck and $16.5 million for a new deck and three new steel girders underneath it,” County Engineer Nathan Bergman said.
The updated cost estimates are shared in the county’s Jan. 23 agenda materials, starting on page 114 (see below attachment).
The less expensive option would add 35 to 40 years of life to the bridge, while the most costly option would add 100 years or more, according to engineer estimates. Some confusion was noted by Wabaunsee County who believed the cheaper option to be rehabilitated by adding a third girder to the existing two girders. Engineer Craig Mattox with Finney & Turnipseed LLC explained why that’s not accounted for in their estimate.
“If we had a third girder it would be more expensive than the three girder one. We have plans for a two girder structure with a new deck on it,” he said.
Federal dollars will be allocated through the Kansas Department of Transportation. Pottawatomie County’s contribution would be about $3.4 million on the less expensive option versus $9.2 million on the more expensive repair.
“Some of this information is new to us. We need to digest those, look those over. I am disappointed that (commissioner) Greg (Riat) is not here at the meeting today as I did discuss this with him a couple weeks ago,” said Nancy Hier, Wabaunsee County 3rd district commissioner.
Riat was absent from Monday’s meeting due to an illness, according to County Administrator Chad Kinsley.
Both counties agreed to revisit their discussion toward the end of February.
In other business Monday, it was noted that the Pottawatomie County Treasurer’s Office would close part of the day Tuesday, impacting motor vehicle registrations, titles and driver’s license services.
“The state’s coming in and replacing routers, so they won’t have access to their computers,” Kinsley said.
As a result, the office will close from noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday and barring any issues, should reopen Wednesday following the technology update.