Town to vote on $2.6 million sidewalk project 



SOUTHWEST HARBOR — During a special town meeting Sept. 1, residents will decide whether to approve additional funding for the Main Street Sidewalk, Drainage, Water & Sewer Improvements Project that now has an estimated total of $2,601,844. 

The project, which includes grading, drainage, utility and right-of-way work, requires an additional sum of $802,769 due to an increase of materials and labor. According to Town Manager Marilyn Lowell, the town has allocated $1,799,075 for the project, beginning in 2019. 

Voters approved $1,055,135 at the 2019 town meeting to improve sidewalks on Main Street south of 400 Main St. to Ocean’s End. That year, voters also gave the town permission to accept available funds from the Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT) or other sources.  

An additional $743,740 from the town’s reserves was appropriated at the annual town meeting in June. 

Recent bids from RF Jordan & Sons Construction and Sargent (construction) were higher than anticipated. “A bid was almost a million dollars more, but we can’t award it until we show that we have the money,” said Lowell.   

Two public hearings were held in August to gain input from the community about the project.  

“I just hope that this will be one of the final bids you ask from these companies,” said Southwest Harbor resident Michael Magnani, during one of the hearings. 

If voters choose on Thursday not to fund the additional amount, the project will be canceled and the town would owe approximately $180,000 to MDOT for right-of-way work it has already completed. 

The special town meeting will be held at 6 p.m. at the Southwest Harbor Fire Department. The warrant can be viewed at the Southwest Harbor Town Office or by visiting https://tinyurl.com/3pefxmmt. 

Ninah Rein

Ninah Rein

Writer at Mount Desert Islander
Ninah Rein, an MDI native, covers news and features in the Bar Harbor area. She is glad to be back in Maine after earning a bachelor's degree in San Diego from the University of California.
Ninah Rein

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