GOSHEN — The Goshen Redevelopment Commission agreed to negotiate contracts for two road projects in the next few years.

The commission voted Tuesday to authorize negotiation of an engineering contract with American Structurepoint for improvements to College Avenue. The road will be improved between U.S. 33 and the railroad crossing to the east.

The work includes widening College Avenue to add a center turn lane, and curbs and a storm sewer system will be installed along the road, according to city Civil Traffic Engineer Leslie Biek. A 10-foot-wide bicycle and pedestrian path will be built along the north side of the road.

She said the work is comparable to improvements that were made to Kercher Road. She told the commission that Structurepoint was one of six companies that submitted proposals for the College Avenue work, which were reviewed and rated by a small team with the city, and that the company had also designed the first phase of Kercher Road improvements so they’re comfortable with the pick.

The project is slated for construction sometime in 2025.

U.S. 33 crosswalk

The commission also authorized negotiating a contract for engineering services with A&Z Engineering for improvements to U.S. 33. The work will be done between Fairfield and Plymouth avenues.

It includes installing a pedestrian crossing and adding turn lanes at the two intersections. City officials had hoped a 2017 traffic study would justify adding traffic lights at the two intersections, but settled for a plan that includes the crosswalk and turn lanes to reduce traffic congestion.

The placement of the crosswalk was the subject of some debate. The original concept had put it south of Fairfield Avenue, but Goshen City Council members questioned that at a December 2018 meeting, when they approved an agreement over the plan with the Indiana Department of Transportation.

They also questioned the project start date – sometime in 2022 – but heard it was a result of funding the estimated $1.03 million project with federal money. The RDC had set the project aside in late 2017 after hearing the price, but it was put back on track when the city learned it was likely to get federal funding.

Biek told the commission that A&Z is a Fort Wayne company that Goshen hasn’t worked with directly before, but they had some design ideas and seemed eager to work with the city. It was one of four companies that submitted proposals to be reviewed and rated.

The project is scheduled for 2022, which Biek noted is sooner than the College Avenue improvements because no land acquisition will be needed. She said both projects are funded by 80-20 federal grant money.

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