clear
Friday September 4th, 2015 8:31AM

FBCC wants more info on bridge bid cost

By Jerry Gunn Reporter
FLOWERY BRANCH - Flowery Branch City Council members said Thursday night they wanted more information before they change course on controlling the potentially destructive flood water flow from Flowery Branch Creek.

City Manager Bill Andrew told Council that bridges spanning the creek would hold up better in a flood than culverts and would be cheaper to build, but there's a $43,000 price tag on getting the construction bid package ready from Pond Consultants in Atlanta.

Councilman Damon Gibbs said he wants to meet with the consultant first before approving that expense.

"The reason I think it's a good idea to meet with Pond is the design concept has changed," Gibbs said. "For us to approve an expense without knowing more about it does not make sense to me."

Gibbs said he wanted meetings with Pond Consultants before the next council meeting when members could decide if they want to give the go-ahead on the bid package.

Andrew told council members that Pond recommended bridges at most if not all of the crossings of Flowery Branch Creek, and city staff agrees.

"Due to the volumes of water that we're now seeing on our study, a bridge would be more cost effective," Andrew said. "According to numbers we've seen the bridges would be cheaper to construct but what Council I think is concerned about right now is the idea that we may be spending $43,000 just to get to the point where we can entertain the construction cost."

Andrew said Pond's estimated cost was for a bid package on a Spring Street bridge, but there are four others that would cross the creek at Cantrell Street, East Main, Phil Niekro, and Mulberry Street.

"We're entertaining bridges at all those sites due to the lower cost and because a bridge would have a much larger capacity than any culvert that we could construct," Andrew added.

That flood water capacity would be really larger because of Northfolk Southern's water flow project under its railroad tracks, according to the City Manager. In April the normal train speed at 50 mph was reduced to 10 mph when two of three culverts under the railroad tracks just below town started collapsing and caused the tracks to sag.

"As we understand it now, what Northfolk Southern is proposing to build will be larger in capacity than what was there during the failure last spring," Andrew said. "However, what they are building, our engineers feel, will impede the flow of water. The stream would back up and there won't be a free flow of the stream at flood stage directly into Lake Lanier. The water will back up somewhat at the railroad and it will be deeper on our end."

Andrew said the bridge design accounts for that back-up but it could cost the city more for its bridges and that's also a concern for City Council.
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Ethics laws set to take effect Jan. 1 in Georgia
After dominating much of the legislative session, a set of major ethics reforms is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1.
7:04PM ( 1 year ago )
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 1 year ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
Dems, GOP seek to define issue for 2014 elections
Ten months to next year's midterm elections, Democrats are determined to make Congress' slim production of fewer than 60 laws and plenty of incompletes - on immigration, gun control, tax reform and basic spending bills - a defining issue, heaping much of the blame on the GOP-led House for obstructing President Barack Obama's second-term agenda.
1:38PM ( 1 year ago )
Kerry seeks framework for Mideast peace talks
A senior State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry will try this week to get Israel and the Palestinians to agree on a framework for negotiating a final peace agreement, yet cautions against raising expectations for Kerry's latest round of shuttle diplomacy.
1:35PM ( 1 year ago )
Mexican sales tax hike seen as boon on US border
Mexican license plates are common in parking lots of shopping malls in U.S. border cities. They will be even more familiar after Mexico raises its federal sales tax in border regions to match the rest of the country, say merchants and shoppers.
11:06AM ( 1 year ago )
Politics
Urban camping and panhandling amendment gets first okay in Flowery Branch
Flowery Branch City Council is one step closer to amending the city's solicitation ordinance to prohibit urban camping and aggressive panhandling in city limits.
By Tyler Nutt
7:15AM ( 1 hour ago )
Police suspend search of wells for teen missing since 2007
Authorities have suspended a search for the body of a college student who went missing almost 8 years ago.
By Associated Press
6:36AM ( 1 hour ago )
In Atlanta, Biden says 2016 bid will hinge on whether he, his family have 'emotional energy' to run
ATLANTA (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden says he is unsure if he will seek the Democratic presidential nomination, saying his decision will hinge on whether he and his family have the "emotional energy...
3:33AM ( 4 hours ago )
Domestic dispute sees Gainesville baby abandoned on Rabbittown roadway
Two Gainesville residents involved in a domestic dispute were arrested Thursday afternoon after they abandoned their baby on the side of a Rabbittown road.
8:37PM ( 11 hours ago )
Report: Dog charged police, prompting gunfire in wrong home
A dog charged police officers who entered the wrong Atlanta home searching for a burglar, prompting gunfire that seriously wounded an officer, injured the homeowner and killed the animal, according to a police report released Thursday.
6:43PM ( 13 hours ago )