Joshua Morrison/News
Joshua Morrison/News

MOUNT VERNON — Knox County Commissioners approved Thursday a public announcement to contract for construction inspection services related to the county’s $1.1 million Parrott Street bridge replacement project.

Engineering firms interested in the work must provide a statement of qualifications to Knox County Engineer Cameron Keaton no later than May 31. Their statements of qualification must include the firm’s history, education and experience of owners and key technical personnel, technical expertise of the firm’s current staff, the firm’s equipment and facilities, references, and any previous work performed for the county engineer. It must also state the firm’s experience in performing construction administration and observation as well as availability of staff.

As required by the Ohio Revised Code, responding engineering firms will be ranked in order of their qualifications. Following this evaluation, the county will enter contract negotiations with the most highly qualified firm. Firms must be ODOT pre-qualified and capable of completing all required reports and testing, including but not limited to compaction testing, concrete cylinder and beam testing, dynamic load testing, and false form work approval.

The county’s upcoming Parrott Street bridge replacement project is located just east of Columbus Road and involves the replacement of an existing 97-by-38-foot steel truss bridge over Dry Creek. The new structure will be a three-slab bridge and is to provide a multi-use trail/walking path on the north side. The anticipated date for inspection startup is July of this year, with completion anticipated to be by November. The bridge is located near a bike path.

County Commissioner Thom Collier said the bridge replacement is an age issue related to deterioration and not a load-bearing issue. The Parrott Street bridge is more than 30 years old. It was constructed during a time when metal grid bridges were popular as they allowed water to penetrate through them. However, they didn’t hold up well to salt and other materials, he offered. The condition of the underside of the bridge creates urgency, commissioners noted.

Currently, the city of Mount Vernon’s portion of the overall Parrott Street project is ongoing, commissioners said. It involves lifting a section of railroad six inches off the ground where Parrott Street meets South Main Street, in order to allow street improvements that include fixing a dip.

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Larry Di Giovanni: 740-397-5333 or larry@mountvernonnews.com and on Twitter, @mountvernonnews