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Avondale Estates moving forward with phase one North Woods construction

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Avondale Estates moving forward with phase one North Woods construction

Lake Avondale. Photo by Dean Hesse.

Avondale Estates, GA — Construction will soon begin on the North Woods rain garden project at Lake Avondale. The Avondale Estates City Commission, at its Feb. 23 meeting, approved a resolution allowing the city manager to contract with Centennial Contractor Enterprises to construct phase one of the project.

Phase one is primarily focused on building the recreational trails and must be completed by June 30 under the terms of the land and water conservation fund grant the city received.

“We have to have the phase of the project that is tied to the LWCF grant completed by the end of June of this year, so that is the impetus for moving forward with this segment of the project in the immediate term,” City Manager Patrick Bryant said. “We also have instructed our liaison and contractor who is performing this work to prepare the state bid-related work order for the next phase of the project so that we can get moving on that in the short term as well.”

Commissioner Dee Merriam added that this phase will connect the sidewalk ending at Berkeley Road, on the north side of the lake, to the existing path.

The contract amount is about $208,000 and the cost of the project cannot be more than $220,000.

The North Woods project dates back to 2008 when the city created the Lake Avondale Master Plan which included a subsequent North Woods rain garden concept plan to mitigate erosion, said Marco Ancheita of Lord Aeck Sargent at a meeting in March 2021.

At the Jan. 12 City Commission meeting, the board decided to pursue completing the project through the state bid process and to phase the project, after rejecting the sole bid from Reeves Young, which came in at a cost of over $1 million for the base bid and about $340,000 for the alternate.

During the City Commission meeting, City Manager Patrick Bryant said the bid came in 40% higher than the estimated cost.

In other business:

– The City Commission lifted the emergency COVID-19 restrictions that allowed the board to meet virtually since December 2021.

In December, City Hall closed due to a positive COVID-19 case. At that time, municipal court was also suspended and the public works department shifted to staggered schedules. As of Feb. 14, City Hall reopened and the city returned to normal operations.

– Additionally, the City Commission set the stormwater fee at $180 per household, which is the rate the city believes will meet current and future service needs.

“I’m really happy we’re being so proactive about stormwater,” Commissioner Lisa Shortell said. “This is the way that we think we can get ahead of this so that we’re not reacting but we’re being proactive.”

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