ELBURN – Work to extend Anderson Road could begin in the next few weeks, and cars could be driving across the new bridge as soon as the end of next year.
And the project could come in more than 25 percent less expensive than first estimated, Kane County transportation officials confirmed.
Late last week, the Illinois Department of Transportation awarded the bid for the Anderson Road project to Elgin-based contractor Martam Construction and Romeoville road builder Herlihy Mid-Continent for $14.4 million.
The bid amount comes in almost $5.5 million less than the official Kane County engineer's estimate of $19.8 million, said Steve Coffinbargar, the county's assistant director of transportation.
"We are still seeing some favorable bid prices on projects out there," Coffinbargar said. "And that's good news."
He said pre-construction meetings with the contractors will be held in coming days, at which time the contractors and public transportation officials will hammer out details of how the construction will be carried out, including a more firm timeline.
For now, however, Coffinbargar said the contract calls for 220 working days, which still can be influenced positively or negatively by weather conditions during the work.
Should work begin by mid-October, Coffinbargar said "the majority of the work" could be done by late 2014, meaning vehicles will be able to access the new stretch of road at that time, should the work not be too delayed by weather.
Final details around the new roadway would then be completed by mid-2015, he said.
"Fingers crossed, that's what we're hoping for," he said.
Officials with Kane County and the village of Elburn have sought the project for years. The county had ranked the project one of its top transportation priorities, as it would create a new overpass of the Union Pacific Railroad tracks in Elburn as an alternative to the oft-backed up rail crossing on Route 47 in Elburn's downtown.
Under the proposal, Anderson Road would be extended from its terminus just south of Route 38 on Elburn's east end to Keslinger Road near the Elburn Metra station.
The project is being largely financed from federal and state transportation dollars.