Construction and Government

More contracts awarded for major re-pave of Grand Rapids streets

Work will be completed by end of year or early next spring.

August 22, 2014
| By Pete Daly |
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The Grand Rapids City Commission has awarded another series of contracts for the major repair of city streets since a majority of voters agreed to pay for it by approving an extension of a temporary income tax increase for the next 15 years.

Fifty-six segments of “vital streets” throughout the city will be rebuilt as the result of $15.3 million worth of contracts awarded to Diversco Construction Co. Inc., Nagel Construction Inc. and Michigan Paving and Materials Co. The work will be completed this year or by next spring, according to city officials.

“The focus of this work is on preservation of our street system by protecting our street investments and by making sure these streets do not fall into poor condition. Acting now saves these streets and saves us all money long-term,” said Rick DeVries, assistant city engineer.

Deputy City Manager Eric DeLong said the advance investment in the street system “jumpstarts our progress.” He added that the rotomilling and resurfacing work will be augmented by “triage paving that has covered 30 street segments already and by additional contracts for concrete repair and other treatments.”

Grand Rapids streets were in serious disrepair due to lack of funding during the economic decline of prior years, but the work that has already been done this year “will make a difference by this winter,” said DeLong.

The advance investment in street renovation is being financed by a $17 million bond issue that was also authorized by the City Commission Aug. 12, which will be repaid through the city’s Vital Street Fund.

Mayor George Heartwell and city commissioners Senita Lenear and Ruth Kelly participated in a ribbon-cutting celebrating completion of the first vital street segment on Buckley Street SE near Downtown Market. Heartwell congratulated the community for its vote in May to extend the current income tax rate of 1.5 percent on corporations and residents to 2030, along with the current rate of 0.75 percent on non-residents who work in the city.

Grand Rapids income tax rates are normally 1.3 percent on corporations and residents, and 0.65 percent on non-residents, but were increased to the current levels by voters in 2010. The temporary increase would have expired next year.

At the ribbon-cutting in mid-August, Heartwell said the city government appreciates “the confidence you have shown in our ability to meet this issue head on and provide the types of streets we need to rebuild our neighborhoods and business districts.”

The contractors are given up to 14 days to complete the work at any given location. The work involves grinding off the existing pavement surface to a depth of up to 2 inches before repaving with hot mix asphalt.

The contract for Diversco is for $2,726,759; for Nagel it is $3,476,670; and for Michigan Paving it is $3,691,025.

According to a Grand Rapids city business manager, Diversco Construction Co. was founded in 1982 and is based at 570 Market Ave. SW. It is owned by David Maas and Daniel Timmer. She said Nagel Construction Inc., established in 1962, is in Wayland. Bruce Morren is listed as an officer of the company. Michigan Paving and Materials Co. is in East Lansing and was established in 1963. Area managers listed are Jason VanPatten and Steve Rookus.

According to Grand Rapids City Hall, updates on these and all other city road construction projects are online at www.grcity.us. Search “construction updates” and select the first link available.

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