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Council OKs road designer for upgrades

City Council members approved agreements Tuesday that will provide for design work for a new list of residential street upgrades, and will direct a contractor to build sidewalks and a pedestrian bridge in west Lawton.

The contractor agreement is settlement of action the City of Lawton had initiated against A.E. Construction, a long-time city contractor. The council had assessed liquidated damages against the firm in August 2018 after citing it for going significantly over the time frame allocated by contracts for street projects in north and south Lawton neighborhoods.

At the time, city officials said the contractor had gone 222 days past the contracted completion time for Phase I residential streets and 195 days for Phase II. Both contracts were funded through the 2012 Capital Improvements Program. Under city code, the council may assess liquidated damages against contractors who exceed completion times in their contract and may ban such contractors from bidding on city projects for 36 months if the length of those overruns exceed 10 percent of the contracted completion time.

While council members voted for the ban (citing the problems residents endured because of the delay in street completion), city staff members had not recommended the action, citing the contractor’s work history with the city and the fact A.E. Construction is the city’s “on demand” contractor for concrete repairs when city employees can’t get to a project. The contractor also had objected, saying he did not warrant the liquidated damages or ban.

The Lawton Constitution

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