GOSHEN — Elkhart County officials opened bids for intersection improvements north of Middlebury which will be funded by Grand Design RV.

Commissioners on Monday opened three bids for improvements to U.S. 131 and C.R. 2. The work will include additional turn lanes and turning radius improvements, according to Transportation Manager Charlie McKenzie.

“This project is basically being funded by Grand Design, due to the development they’re doing in the area,” he said.

The company has experienced major growth since it launched in 2013. It has invested tens of millions of dollars in new manufacturing space and has grown from 35 employees to about 1,700, the company said during a tour of the plant in May. 

Grand Design was projected to produce its 100,000th unit this summer.

The bids that were received for the work were:

n Niblock Excavating Inc., for $447,130

n Rieth-Riley Construction Co., for $489,000

n Walsh and Kelly Inc., for $499,950

The quotes will be evaluated and a recommendation will be brought back to the commissioners. 

East Pointe Drive

Also Monday, commissioners voted to rename a subdivision road to avoid confusion with another street in St. Joseph County.

Commissioners voted to rename East Pointe Drive in Cleveland Township to Russell Point Drive. The 260-foot long road is on the north side of C.R. 2, south of Dawson and Stonecutter drives, at the entrance to Stoneybrooke Shores.

Planning Manager Jason Auvil said the change affects only two parcels of land along the road. 

“The problem is, we can’t assign an address to those parcels because there’s a conflict with St. Joe County, and the fact that less than a half mile away, they also have an East Point Drive,” he said. “Not only do they have an East Pointe Drive, but it’s also the same 911 range that this address range would be. So when they try to get an address with utilities and stuff, there’s a conflict.”

He said the best way to resolve the conflict was to rename the road. Russell is the name of the developer of the subdivision.

Auvil said their normal procedure doesn’t include checking a database of road names in other counties. 

“This is just one of those really freak things that happens,” he said. 

Commissioner Mike Yoder half-seriously asked why St. Joseph County can’t change the name on its sign, but made the motion to change the Elkhart County road in the interest of being neighborly.

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