Route 3 bids in

BAR HARBOR — The Maine Department of Transportation (DOT) received four bids for a contract to rebuild about four miles of Route 3 here, spokesman Ted Talbot said.

The budget for the project was $18 million. The Sargent Corporation, whose New England operations are based in Stillwater, was the apparent low bidder at $18.4 million, Talbot said. The company also has offices in Bangor.

“There are still steps on the way to finalizing the contract,” he said, so the contract likely won’t be signed until late December or January.

“We’re excited,” said Tim Folster, vice president for operations at Sargent. “It’s a large project for our company. We plan on working with the DOT to complete the job in the time indicated in the contract.”

The contractor and DOT both will be in close communication with affected residents and businesses, they said. “We’ll put a schedule together which shows which sections we’ll be working on when,” Folster said, noting the project is scheduled to be complete by June 2019.

The annual average traffic count for the affected stretch of highway is as high as 10,000 vehicles a day.

Folster said his company will coordinate with utility companies to complete related work before the road work begins. “We’ll be coordinating with them to do the appropriate clearing, but they’ll set the poles,” he said.

Detours will be set up with temporary traffic lights during construction on Route 3, beginning sometime before May of 2017, creating one-way loops. The town of Bar Harbor recently approved a permanent traffic light for the intersection of Eden Street and the Eagle Lake Road.

During the first, northern half of the project, traffic will enter Bar Harbor on Route 3 and depart via the Crooked Road. During the second phase, traffic will come into Bar Harbor on Route 3 and depart the Paradise Hill road in Acadia National Park. Only one of these two detours will be in effect at a time, and the detours will be mandatory. Trucks and large commercial traffic will be routed through Somesville via the Eagle Lake Road for both directions.

Liz Graves

Liz Graves

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Former Islander reporter and editor Liz Graves grew up in California and came to Maine as a schooner sailor.

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