Low bid might mean concrete for Eighth

Although trustees had planned to repave Eighth Street with asphalt, an attractive bid has them considering concrete instead.

J. Nardulli Concrete submitted the low bid of $1.34 million to pave Eighth Street from Garfield Avenue to County Line Road with asphalt. The board also asked contractors to submit a bid for concrete, and one from G&M Cement Construction came it at $1.48 million.

With an additional $50,000 in construction observation costs for concrete, the savings from asphalt totals $192,000. Concrete typically is more expensive, which is why trustees have used it less frequently.

“When we’re redoing streets, even if they are busted up concrete streets, we have reconstructed them in asphalt,” Trustee Neale Byrnes said at Tuesday night’s Hinsdale Village Board meeting. “That’s been kind of our (standard operating procedure) and the reason we’ve been able to do a lot of the MIP projects is we haven’t spent all that money up front.”

Using concrete would save $371,000 in maintenance costs over the next 45 years, according to village staff.

“$371,000 matters, but it is not as big as I thought it would be,” Trustee Jerry Hughes said. “The immediate savings also is not as big as I thought it would be for asphalt.”

Several trustees said Eighth Street is used often by drivers cutting across the south side of town who want to avoid 55th Street.

“People do not go onto 55th Street because of the traffic and the stop lights,” Trustee Matt Posthuma said.

Trustee Lauren Haarlow agreed, describing Eighth as a major cross street.

“People are on Eighth Street. That’s the go-to street,” she said.

While Village President Tom Cauley acknowledged that point, he said his understanding is that car traffic is not the primary reason streets deteriorate.

“Even a street that has heavy car usage doesn’t get the same workout that a street does that has a lot of truck usage,” he said.

Cauley also noted that if the village did use concrete, it would take 15 years to recoup the $192,000 in savings from using asphalt.

“A 15-year payback doesn’t seem to justify, to me, the difference,” he said. “We could pave a lot of streets for $190,000.”

Concrete lasts longer than asphalt, but it takes longer to pave streets due to curing time. Concrete also can be more difficult to repair in the event of a water main break under the street.

Byrnes, who is chair of environment and public services, asked village staff to look more closely at the dollars involved in either approach before the board votes on the matter at its April 20 meeting.

“I think we’d like to do concrete, but we just have to feel good about it,” he said.

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Pamela Lannom is editor of The Hinsdalean