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Lower Makefield beefs up road improvement projects


A smoother ride awaits motorists traveling on dozens of roads in Lower Makefield Township.
The township supervisors at their Jan. 19 meeting unanimously voted to advertise for bids on the 2022 road improvement program estimated to cost about $3 million.
Board members also approved advertising for bids on painting three of the four township swimming pools and repairing four tennis courts at the township’s Community Park on Edgewood Road.
In addition, the supervisors at the meeting unanimously voted to approve a $307,500 settlement of a lawsuit filed by a former police officer who had been fired by the township.
On the road program, the township will advertise for a base bid on repaving all or parts of 56 roads totaling 11.41 miles. In addition, two alternate bids will ask for prices on doing some parking lot paving at Memorial Park on Woodside Road and repaving some roads in the Yardley Run development, township Engineer Andy Pockl said.
Township Manager Kurt Ferguson said this year’s plan represents a dramatic expansion of the road improvement program, which for the last several years has repaved an average of about 2.5 miles a year.
His proposals to fund the 2022 program include taking out a $1.65 million loan and using about $750,000 of American Rescue Plan Act money.

The loan will help allow the township to do “four years of paving in one” and mitigate year-to-year increases in paving costs, Ferguson said.
Borrowing the money, and the required new ordinance to accompany that action, will be discussed at supervisor meetings over the next several weeks, he added. The proposed timeline calls for the supervisors to vote on awarding a bid for the road improvement program at the March 16 meeting, Pockl said.
Answering a question from Supervisor Daniel Grenier, Pockl added that bid documents will include asking contractors for plans on traffic control and other measures to minimize inconvenience for residents.
“If they can execute it properly, this will be great,” Grenier said of the 2022 road improvement program.
Painting the pools will cost between $60,000 and $70,000, Ferguson estimated. Work on the tennis courts will include filling in cracks and resealing and resurfacing damaged portions, said Pockl, who estimated the cost at about $56,000. Actual costs on any publicly bid project aren’t known until the bids come back.
Township Solicitor David Truelove said he wasn’t at liberty to name the former police officer who will be getting the settlement. Truelove advised the supervisors that agreeing to it should work out better for the township than continuing the litigation.
Ferguson said the settlement will not be covered under liability insurance and will have to come out of township funds.