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City hopes new plan for residential street repairs will streamline projects

City officials amended a contract last week consolidating road construction design and utility work under one engineering firm.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The city of Corpus Christi plans to make some changes to the residential street repair program.

City officials amended a contract last week, consolidating road construction design and utility work under one engineering firm.

The city's amended contract with the contractor will allocate just over six million dollars to the program.

Public Works Director, Ernesto De La Garza spoke with 3NEWS and said it will help get projects done in a more streamlined way.

"We have a traffic control plan where one prime contractor is in control of the whole project rather than having two contractors come back-to-back to do the utility work for us and then coming back with the street contractor to do the street work second," De La Garza said.  

The 2023 Residential Street Repair Program will be funded by water and wastewater funds. The City of Corpus Christi said the program aims to extend the life of streets. 

It's something De La Garza said will help prevent duplicate work. He stated, "Especially if the utility is older, like clay pipe underneath the roadway surface. So, what we're trying to prevent is have that roadway work done and then ensure that later on we don't have to go tear through that good pavement to go fix that utility that might have programs after the fact." 

De La Garza said the program was originally just for roadwork, so newly approved funding will be used for utilities. He said the city will prioritize streets without utility needs, followed by streets that need utility reconstruction. 

The city said one engineering firm handling both means less delays. "This is just good planning on the part of our utility department and our engineering department helping us to assist, making sure that that doesn't happen in the future." De La Garza added.

The city also approved a change order last week which added two and half million dollars and one hundred-eighty days for a backlog of residential street projects.

Those are part of the 2021 street preventative maintenance program. Allowing a contractor to complete eleven residential street repair projects.

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