Contractor wins bid for New Castle pier project but funds still needed
A contractor has won the bid for the long-awaited New Castle pier project.
At the end of last month, the city of New Castle received a bid of less than $1.2 million from Dissen & Juhn, based in Stevensville, Maryland.
The plan is to build a pier at the foot of Delaware Street that will extend about 170 feet from the wharf to a navigable channel. There will be a 100 foot long fixed dock, built with stairs and ramps.
Previously, New Castle received an exceedingly high bid and had to push back construction, which was expected to start last year.
Bill Barthel, New Castle’s city administrator, says the next step they’re taking is to request $300,000 from the state to meet the contractor’s offer.
“We’re cautiously optimistic that we’ll be able to get the funds from the state to complete the project, but at this time, we do not have the funds necessary to move forward,” said Barthel. "We’re working as diligently as we can to get something started as quickly as possible. And we're grateful to the state for the help they've provided.”
New Castle has already acquired $800,000 from the state and $145,000 from FEMA. Hurricane Sandy destroyed the city’s previous pier.
If if the city gets the funds needed to proceed, regulations on putting pilings in the river will hold up starting any work until at least July.
But once this pier project is underway, Barthel says it would promote tourism and provide a number of economic benefits to the New Castle community.