Martin Luther King bridge replacement bids rejected
All bids for replacing the Martin Luther King Drive bridge in Gary have been rejected after coming in above engineers estimates, said INDOT spokesman Jim Pinkerton.
INDOT will now re-evaluate what its next steps should be when it comes to replacing the bridge, Pinkerton said.
INDOT closed the six-year-old bridge May 19 after inspectors found extensive cracking on the bridge deck, cracks in the bridge beams and cracking in the beam flange. INDOT engineers said the cracked concrete led them to doubt the bridge’s load-carrying capacity.
Superior Construction of Gary, the bridge’s builder, and RQAW of Indianapolis, its designer, have been suspended from seeking state contracts because of the bridge’s premature failure. But both those suspensions are on hold pending appeals.
Superior Construction was the low bidder on building a replacement bridge with a bid of $2,992,887. Three other construction companies bid more.
The Indiana Department of Transportation has pledged to replace the bridge and have it open by the end of the year.