This long-awaited Hamilton road project is on time and under budget

The South Hamilton Crossing project remains on time and under budget, Butler County Transportation Improvement District Director David Spinney said.

In a significant forward step for the project, beams that will serve as the decks for what has been named for the late Hamilton transportation guru and historian Jim Blount, a former Journal-News editor, have been installed and continue to be worked on, Spinney said.

“That is certainly a major milestone,” Spinney said. “I would anticipate that most of the work will be pretty much wrapped-up yet this calendar year, the big-ticket items,” with some of the final details, such as some concrete work and the final pavement application, requiring a few months of work next year.

The predicted completion date is July for the project that will link Ohio 4 and areas to the east with the area near Miami University Hamilton, as well as areas of the city’s West Side. The projected finish date is well ahead of the promised date of Dec. 31, 2018, Spinney and Hamilton Public Works Director Rich Engle said.

“Things are going well,” Spinney said. “There have been a number of small but important change orders to deal with city utility work” that replaces some old infrastructure, such as gas mains, water pipes, sewers and electric equipment, he added.

The extra utility work “was all a good call on the city’s part, because you don’t want to be putting new infrastructure, tying it into really old infrastructure in disrepair,” Spinney said. “The city said, ‘We just need to replace some of those things so we don’t have to come back and dig the road up.’”

The contractor, John R. Jurgensen Co., performed the utility work, with city employees very involved in reviewing and inspecting the work, he said.

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“With those change orders, we’re still about $300,000-and-some below the initial contract” of $17.96 million, Spinney said. Overall costs, including property acquisition and highway design, bring total costs to more than $30 million.

“I was looking at a report that I recently got and they’re about 50 percent complete in time and 50 percent complete in budget,” Engle said.

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