This aerial map shows improvements planned for the Metcalf 2.0 road reconstruction project. Construction is slated to begin in 2022, and the county’s quarter-cent sales tax will be used to finance a portion of the project.

PAOLA — The Metcalf 2.0 project to rehabilitate the busy Louisburg thoroughfare has taken another step forward.

The Miami County Commission on Wednesday, Nov. 20, awarded a contract for survey and design services to BG Consultants.

Seven firms submitted proposals for Metcalf 2.0, which is a joint project between Miami County and the city of Louisburg. A selection committee composed of staff and government officials with the county and city trimmed that list to three candidates. Based on the quality of the proposal and the bid price, BG Consultants emerged the frontrunner.

Matt Oehlert, project manager with the county’s Road and Bridge Department, said BG Consultants’ bid of $297,500 was $52,500 under the $350,000 budgeted for survey and design services.

The estimated $4.1 million Metcalf Road project covers 4,850 feet, from Amity Street (Kansas Highway 68) to 287th Street in Louisburg. Most of the project will be funded by a $3.1 million federal grant from the Mid-America Regional Council, with the remaining cost split equally between the city and the county.

Some of the work planned for the busy corridor on the community’s east side includes roadway curb and gutter upgrade, integrated trail east along Metcalf Road from South Second Street to West 287th Street, and sidewalk along Metcalf from South Second Street to South 10th Street, according to previous reports.

The county did not receive a cost-share grant from the Kansas Department of Transportation, which would have provided funds for turn lanes and a light at Fifth Street and Metcalf Road, the intersection which leads into Broadmoor Elementary.

Oehlert told commissioners the turn lanes will be part of the design, and if funds are available in the project’s budget, those improvements would be added to the intersection.

Louisburg City Administrator Nathan Law said if the turn lanes and light are added, the HAWK (High-intensity Activated crossWalK beacon) currently at the Fifth and Metcalf intersection could be moved to the entrance of Ron Weers Park where a new pedestrian crosswalk would be created. The park includes a walking path around City Lake that connects to other city trails and sidewalks.

“Depending on funding, that same signal could be placed on North Third at the new pedestrian crossing and a new signal placed at Ron Weers crossing,” Law said.

Funds collected from the county’s quarter-cent sales tax would be the primary funding source for the city and county’s portion of project. Louisburg residents in November 2018 voted to increase the city’s sales tax for infrastructure improvements from 0.25 to 0.5 of 1 percent. The increase went into effect July 1, and the city could use some of those funds for the project as well.

The project would be let for bid in fall 2021, and construction is slated to begin in 2022.

News Editor Doug Carder can be reached at (913) 294-2311 or doug.carder@miconews.com.

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