KENDALLVILLE — Kendallville awarded a contract to Pulver Asphalt Paving to construct two sections of trail in the city this year.

A state grant and support from Noble Trails Inc. will cover most of the cost, with the city on the hook for just about $64,000, slightly more than 10% of the overall cost.

The city opened four bids for the projects two weeks ago, with Pulver providing the lowest bid of $613,495.75.

The project, which is being called the Grand Army of the Republic Trail, includes two sections of walking path on the east side of the city. The two segments will add just shy of 1 mile of new trail.

The western segment connects the Fishing Line Trail to the Fairview Boulevard Trail near the entrance to ACRES Land Trust’s Detering Nature Preserve. The eastern segment extends the Dowling Street Trail from Allen Chapel Road to Walmart on the north side of U.S. 6.

Kendallville had specifically been working on trail plans along U.S. 6 out to Walmart as a safety improvement in order to get pedestrians off of the highway. People are frequently walking along the shoulder of U.S. 6 against traffic, sometimes pushing strollers, as vehicles zip by on the east side of the town.

The other project will close one of the final gaps in the Fishing Line Trail and its 11-mile connection from Rome City to Kendallville.

On Tuesday, Kendallville city engineer Scott Derby noted to the Board of Works and Public Safety that the bid included a few “non-participating items,” things that are outside the scope of what the Next Level Trails grant is allowed to cover.

Those items included a privacy fence between the Walmart trail and the Arvada Hills subdivision — something those residents specifically asked for back when the trail was first being planned — as well as some work to eliminate some existing sidewalk in favor of a newer configuration of the trail which will avoid some wetland areas.

Since the grant can’t cover those items, the city is left with $64,371.75 that it has to pick up on its own tab.

The remainder is being covered by the Next Level Trails grant at a level of $549,086.50 and a match from Noble Trails Inc. at $120,340.

Kendallville Mayor Suzanne Handshoe said the city’s portion would come from the board of works contractual services budget, which has the money available for the work.

In other business Tuesday, the board approved up to $4,000 for soil testing at the former McCray Refrigerator factory site off Wayne Street.

Derby said that during clearing of the lot in order to make way for the planned solar field, crews have hit some suspect soils that may need to removed and backfilled with material more conducive to the upcoming construction.

Engineering firm Alt and Witzing quoted an estimate of $3,120 for the compaction testing and other services, but noted that the actual cost will be based on “the services provided on a unit charge basis for time and materials utilized.”

The board of works approved a not-to-exceed figure of $4,000 to cover the expected cost and any unanticipated overage.

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