The Franklin General Authority’s nearly $4 million corrective action plan to fix problems at the combined sewer outflow site on 15th Street took another step forward Tuesday.
The authority voted unanimously Tuesday to enter into a management contract with the EADS Group engineering firm for the project.
“(The Department of Environmental Protection) approved the plan on May 21,” Kyle Fritz, an EADS engineer who works with the city on several projects, told the authority during the panel’s monthly meeting Tuesday.
The plan, a culmination of research from a four-year study conducted by EADS, focuses on finding a remedy for the issues that cause the 15th Street combined sewer overflow (CSO) to overflow too much, too often.
The plan calls for the removal of the CSO watershed’s inflow and infiltration system.
Fritz, with the help of authority solicitor James Greenfield, outlined contract costs that would mark the real beginning of the project.
“We’re about a month behind according to the plan we submitted, but it’s not a big deal,” Fritz said.
The contract allows EADS to do most of the legwork with the project, putting the firm in control of the engineering and management of the project. The authority will still be heavily involved, but the contract eases burdens of bidding processes, advertisements and on-site work.
Under the contract, the authority will pay EADS a basic service fee of $210,000, an added service fee of $225,000 and an inspection fee of $170,000.
Fritz said these numbers were drawn up without the involvement of Uniontown Heights, which may still join the project as parts of the watershed run through its jurisdiction. If Uniontown Heights were to join, Fritz said the authority’s contract costs would go down.
Easement costs of an estimated $18,000 were not included in the contract.
After reading through the agreement, Greenfield said the only things that could possibly add to authority costs that weren’t covered in the contract would be related to advertising and other smaller costs.
The contract doesn’t hold the authority accountable for reimbursement to the engineers working on the project for costs like mileage and food.
The authority will now meet with PennVEST – a state agency that helps fund, through loans and grants, water-related projects across the state – to see what, if any, part of the $3,937,500 project costs the entity will cover through a grant.
When the project was given an initial OK in March, Fritz estimated the project would break ground in 2021.
In other business Tuesday, it was announced that City of Franklin employees will take on a project that will see about 1,000 feet of water lines replaced in the 0 to 200 blocks of Buffalo and Liberty streets.
Kurt McFadden, the public utilities director for the city, said the project is estimated at $36,840 and will be completed entirely by city crews.
“It’s something they can do, it’s something they’d like to do,” he said.
The line replacement will see two new fire hydrants installed, and one that is currently defunct will be replaced.
The bulk of material will be bought from COSTARS, eliminating the need for a bidding process.
In another matter, Fritz said that after he learned that work being done by M&B Services LLC for the city on the Liberty Street crossing project would coincide with a manhole replacement project conducted through the authority, he was hopeful M&B would agree to take on the manhole project as well.
“I spoke to M&B and they’re not interested, so that project is on hold for now,” Fritz said.
Fritz said he would approach another contractor who will be doing work in the city around the same time.
If the manhole cannot be replaced by the time M&B begins construction on the crossing project, there is a chance that paving and curb-cut work will have to be taken out and replaced once the manhole project is finished.
The crossing project, which will see the installation of two new mast arms and working pedestrian crosswalk signals, is under contract to be completed by Applefest this year.