Orange Beach officials waiting on funding for Canal Road expansion

By GUY BUSBY
Government Editor
guy@gulfcoastmedia.com
Posted 6/24/22

ORANGE BEACH — City officials are waiting on word from the federal government on funding to continue the widening of Canal Road east from Alabama 161.

Orange Beach City Council voted …

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Orange Beach officials waiting on funding for Canal Road expansion

Posted

ORANGE BEACH — City officials are waiting on word from the federal government on funding to continue the widening of Canal Road east from Alabama 161.

Orange Beach City Council voted unanimously Tuesday, June 21, to postpone action on awarding the bid for Canal Road improvements until July 5.

The council had been scheduled to vote to accept a bid by John G. Walton Construction for about $7.36 million to widen Canal Road, also designated Alabama 180 from Alabama 161 to Wilson Boulevard, a distance of about 1.4 miles.

According to the resolution, the city would pay $3.56 million. The rest of the money would be provided through the Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities and Revived Economy Act, known as RESTORE.

Mayor Tony Kennon said increasing costs while the city is waiting on RESTORE grant approval required that the application be resubmitted.

"We had to go back because by the time the federal government OK'd the RESTORE Act money to go toward the road improvements on Canal Road East, the price had gone up so much that we decided to go back and resubmit for additional money," Kennon said. "I think we're going to get it, but it has delayed it, so that is what we're waiting on for the treasury department to give us the OK for us to do what we should have done five years ago. That's the reason for where we're at on that."

The Walton bid was the lower of two submissions for the project by about $500,000. The engineer's estimate on the cost of the project was $5.18 million, according to city reports.

The engineer's report from Thompson Engineering stated that while the lower bid was 40% more than the estimate, the two bids were within 7% of each other and were considered competitive. The report said recent increases in materials costs have caused bids for many projects in Baldwin County to exceed the original estimates.
Under the RESTORE Act, money from civil and administrative penalties charged as a result of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill to provide funds for environmental projects in Gulf Coast states affected by the spill.

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