By Elsa Maxey
Newly discovered issues by CenterPoint Energy for relocating what is called energy gas facilities along a Fort Bend County road will impact a mobility project costing twice as much as initially thought.
Last week Fort Bend County Commissioners Court authorized the expenditure of funds to increase the amount needed for a utility agreement with CenterPoint by $98,933.27. The original cost of the project authorized in February was to have been $96,678.98. Monies for the project will come from 2007 mobility bond funds relating to Golfview Drive from Ironwood Forest to Williams Way in Precinct 1, corresponding to Commissioner Richard Morrison’s jurisdiction in the southern portion of Fort Bend County.
Unexpected field conditions for the adjustment calling for additional materials, equipment, and time for the construction phase is estimated to now cost double of what had been approved under a former utility agreement now augmented with a recently approved supplement agreement. The total cost of the project, however, will not exceed $195,612.25, according to action take by commissioners.
In a letter from Julian S. Valencia, Utility Coordinator with United Engineers, Inc. accompanying county agenda documents, he states that “The existing 8” high pressure main was field located at 14’ deep at the tie-in location on the south side of Golfview Dr. and west of Rabbs Bayou,” noting that for safety precautions, an additional 430 feet of the eight inch steel main was needed.
The installation of the steel gas line to replace existing gas lines has required extra work, as explained in the letter from Valencia, including the clearing of vegetation along an easement before the gas line relocation can begin.
It was recently reported that the mobility bond projects authorized by voters in 2007 are nearing completion as is the case with this Golfview Drive project pending completion. In November, voters overwhelmingly passed a $184.9 million mobility referendum for 59 roadway and transportation improvement projects throughout the county.