A New Bloomfield firm was the low bidder on a new bridge to be built over Middle River about 12 miles south of Fulton along County Road 435.
The Sam Gaines Construction Co. of New Bloomfield bid $399,103.50 for the 120-foot bridge that will have three spans and an elevated 1,070-foot approach.
Callaway County Presiding Commissioner Gary Jungermann said the project also includes raising the roadway near the bridge to prevent frequent flooding that often causes the road to be closed.
Other bidders were Widel Construction of Blackwater with a bid of $401,902, Boone Construction Co. of Columbia with a bid of $439,916, L. Krupp Construction, Inc. of Ellisville with a bid of $441,871, Don Schnieders Excavating Co., Inc. of Jefferson City with a bid of $467,279 and Lehman Construction LLC of California with a bid of $503,781.
"The county awarded the bid to Sam Gaines Construction of New Bloomfield. But the final approval must come from the Missouri Department of Transportation because they administer the federal money that will pay for most of the project. We expect a decision on that soon, maybe within a few days. We then will have a pre-construction meeting no later than Aug. 1," Jungermann said.
The county plans to have the bridge built this summer or early fall and open before winter.
"When it rains hard," Jungermann said, "Middle River gets out of its banks around the bridge. We want the roadway leading up to the bridge to be elevated to keep the road from being closed during high water."
County Road 435 is an extension of State Road NN, which runs south of Fulton.
The new bridge will be paid for with 80 percent federal funds and 20 percent county funds. The county earns most of its share by constructing some of its county bridge projects to federal standards.
Jungermann said federal tax money flows into the state each year to finance most of the county large bridge replacement program.
"The state will hold the money until the state and federal government approves bridge projects proposed by counties throughout the state. At last report the state was holding about $55 million in this fund for all counties in the state for bridge work," Jungermann said.
Callaway County, he said, tries to use all of its share of the federal gas tax money as soon as possible while there is still money in the state fund.
Jungermann said Callaway County has about six other bridges that eventually will qualify for the federal funding after the County Road 435 bridge is built this year.
"We are working on all of the deficient bridges and replacing them as fast as possible," Jungermann said. "Using this federal-financed BRO program is about the only way the county can afford these expensive big bridge replacements."