Chesterton Tribune



Town of Porter paving costs reduced

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The Town of Porter will save about $10,000 on its paving bill for this year, according to Building Commissioner Michael Barry.

Barry said in his report to the Town Council at its meeting Tuesday that he had a change order for the recently completed community crossing paving project. Barry’s original estimate was that the paving could cost up to $638,000. Rieth-Riley Construction made the chosen bid on the project for $543,615.50.

Some less expensive materials were used on the project, resulting in a decrease of $39,575.79 for a total cost of $504,039.71. Since a Town the size of Porter receives 75 percent of the cost of paving from the Community Crossing grant, the Town will see about one fourth of the savings from the reduction, about $10,000.

Barry said the savings came from using 25 percent recycled asphalt in the binder course on Oak Hill Road. INDOT allows a maximum of 25 percent recycled material in the binding.

Barry said recycled asphalt produced from milling the top layer of other roads is used by default by most paving companies unless the Town specifies it wants all new material. Porter did make that specification earlier in the process, but Barry opted to try out the recycled material on Oak Hill Road. Part of Oak Hill was made into a “test strip” where one side of the road was done with new asphalt and one side was done with the mixture of new and recycled material to see how the two methods compare in durability.

New Business

The Council approved a contract from Haas & Associates for replacing two lift stations, one at Mineral Springs Road and U.S. Hwy 20 and one at Beam Street and Mineral Springs. The contract is for $79,000 to be paid out of the sewer fund.

Warren Thiede, civil engineering consultant with Haas & Associates, reports that the two lift stations will be replaced to bring them up-to-date and improve conditions where there is confined space. Public Works Supervisor Brenda Brueckheimer reported that the two wet wells at the lift stations are very deep--one being 25 feet--and replacing a pump within one of them is a drawn-out process requiring at least four of her employees. The controllers at the lift stations are also obsolete, and Brueckheimer reports she has been replacing them one at a time at a rate of two per year. Thiede confirmed, “They’re about 10 years past their useful life.”

The Council unanimously adopted Ordinance 2018-09, which rezones the property at 1700 Old Porter Road from single-family residential to light industrial use. Barry reported the property was zoned light industrial when it was built in 1976 and that it was mistakenly included in a blanket rezone of the surrounding area when Porter Cove was built in the 90s.

“The owner is trying to sell the property and this just cleans things up,” Barry said.


Porter Assistant Police Chief Todd Allen thanked the Porter first responders who were involved in trying to save two boys who drowned at the National Lakeshore earlier this month. Allen said three PPD officers were involved in the attempted rescue.

“Unfortunately the outcome wasn’t what we had hoped, but I’d just like to commend them for their efforts,” Allen said.

Brueckheimer reported that she has three items to contribute to the surplus auction list. Brueckheimer said her department has a 2002 White GMC box truck that’s at end of life. The truck needs a head gasket and transmission repairs/replacement. Brueckheimer also listed two generators-- a yellow diesel generator that used to be the back-up power source for the Police Department and a silver 110 Honda generator that’s on its last leg. Brueckheimer reported that the larger generator is no longer high efficiency because its 18 years old. All three of the items had been acquired through donation.

Council Comments

Council President Erik Wagner reported that he and Council Vice-president Ross LeBleu have co-written a letter to the property manager of the National Lakeshore in hopes of securing a meeting to talk about ways to reduce traffic congestion in Porter during the Lakeshore’s peak season. The Council unanimously approved the letter, and Wagner said he would send it after each Council member signed it.



Posted 8/30/2018




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