Pulaski County feels confident in its application for the Community Crossings grant.
The Indiana Department of Transportation is awarding additional road funding opportunities for local governments with available projects. It’s part of the road funding efforts settled by the General Assembly earlier this year.
Jeff Larrison with engineering firm United Consultants presented the application to the Pulaski County Commissioners, Monday night. Referring to Pulaski County’s cost estimates, Larrison says their firm has the advantage of training INDOT’s cost estimators.
“So when INDOT sees this, they’ll know a couple of things: that the accuracy of the numbers can be relied upon, and also that Pulaski County has gone to the extra step of putting one of these together, as well as your drainage and hydraulic study,” says Larrison.
If awarded, the grant will provide 50/50 matching funds for road or bridge repair projects.
Pulaski County has plans to upgrade “Bridge 154.” Initial plans called for a culvert to be installed to prolong the life of the bridge, but the highway department believes this is in the better long-term interest of the county.
The application includes an engineer’s report, a map of the area, and explains in detail the purpose of the project. INDOT is said to be making decisions based on traffic, community need, and partly economic development.
Highway Department Superintendent Terry Ruff says the bridge repair has been discussed for the past year.
“The first thing, we were just trying to get a culvert in, it’s cheaper,” says Ruff. “This 50/50 thing comes up and it’s half the cost. The bottom line is the bridge will last 50-60 years, the culvert, max, 20-30 years.”
While preparing for the application, the Pulaski County Highway Department developed an asset management plan based on recently completed PASER ratings of its local roadways. It was included as part of a five year plan for road maintenance and repair.
The Commissioners approved the letter of support in the Community Crossings’ application, unanimously.