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Published: Friday, 5/25/2012

$9.5M deal to repave Toledo Express OK'd

BY DAVID PATCH
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Various highways aren't Toledo's only targets of repaving projects this year -- the main runway at Toledo Express Airport also is due for a makeover.

The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority board of directors on Thursday awarded a $9.5 million contract to Miller Brothers Construction of Archbold to resurface the 10,600-foot long, 150-foot wide runway and install new in-runway lights to improve bad-weather landing capability.

The port board also agreed to hire RS&H, Ohio, the airport's general consultant, to oversee the project for an additional cost not to exceed $706,000.

Miller's bid for the airport work was about $300,000 less than the only other bid, from Gerken Paving, Inc., of Napoleon and beat the project's official estimated cost by more than $800,000.

Ninety percent of both contracts' costs will be funded by the Federal Aviation Administration. The remaining 10 percent of the paving contract is to be drawn from airport ticket-tax revenue, while the local share for RS&H's management contract was previously appropriated by the board, according to a staff report.

The airport project was one of two multimillion dollar construction contracts the port board awarded Thursday.

Port directors also approved paying Toledo Caisson of Ottawa Lake, Mich., about $2.85 million to construct steel sheet-pile dock face and make other riverfront improvements at the Ironville Dock site on Front Street in East Toledo.

Along with the dock face, the Ironville project includes dredging about 33,200 cubic yards of silt from the Maumee River to provide adequate depth for ships to dock there; installing mooring bollards and dolphins, and building stone drives leading to the mooring area.

The work is the second phase of Ironville Dock's construction, which is being paid for largely with $15 million in state and federal grants. Site grading and railroad construction at the 186-acre site was done in 2011.

Port authority President Paul Toth said the dock-face work likely won't start before late July because of the delivery time for the steel, but he hopes to have the new terminal operational by October.

Toledo Caisson's bid was the lowest of six the port authority received for the dock project.

Airport Manager Steve Arnold said the runway project's start will depend on when the federal funds come in. It will probably take six to seven months to complete, and could be split over two construction seasons, he said.

Repaving either end of the runway won't disrupt operations much, because "with 7,000 or 8,000 feet, we can still accommodate most aircraft," he said.

The middle will be a bit more challenging to schedule because the secondary runway at Toledo Express is only 5,599 feet long.

"We know there's going to be a little bit of pain, because of the type of work involved," Mr. Arnold said.

When the runway was last resurfaced, in 1998, the port authority had to schedule the work primarily on weekends to avoid interfering with Burlington Air Express nighttime cargo flights. But with BAX Global, Inc., having pulled out of Toledo last year, the primary scheduling conflict now would be with Ohio Air National Guard operations at the 180th Fighter Wing base.

Contact David Patch at: dpatch@theblade.com or 419-724-6094.



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