Bids opened for levee setback project

Lower Dungeness River floodplain to be restored

PORT ANGELES — Clallam County commissioners have received three seven-figure bids for the first phase of the Lower Dungeness River floodplain restoration project.

The three commissioners Tuesday opened bids from Scarsella Brothers, Inc. of Kent ($5.53 million), Seton Construction of Port Townsend ($6.49 million) and DelHur Industries of Port Angeles ($7.93 million) for the earthwork phase of the multi-year habitat restoration effort.

The bids were remanded to the county’s Public Works Department for a review and recommendation back to the board.

“Thank you to all of the bidders,” Board Chairman Mark Ozias said after the bid opening.

“This is obviously a significant project, and we really, really appreciate the time and the effort that’s gone into putting these bids together.”

The contractor identified as the lowest responsible bidder will build a setback levee for the Lower Dungeness River and an embankment for Towne Road realignment to allow the river to reclaim its historic floodplain.

Phase 1 includes the installation of a new culvert in a Meadowbrook Creek tributary, construction of a portion of the levee embankment and new section of Towne Road farther from the river, according to an executive summary.

The project is funded by Floodplains by Design and Puget Sound Acquisition and Restoration programs, county officials said.

A groundbreaking ceremony for the long-planned project is scheduled for Sept. 9, Ozias said.

Meanwhile, Commissioners Randy Johnson, Bill Peach and Ozias each donned masks Tuesday to support recent advice from county Health Officer Dr. Allison Berry and other health officials for COVID-19.

Given the rise of new variants, Berry and her colleagues in neighboring counties have encouraged the public to resume wearing masks indoors.

“We have been receiving a lot of communication about that (guidance),” Ozias said.

“There’s a lot of frustration out in the community.”

Ozias acknowledged the frustration of mask wearing and thanked his fellow commissioners for their support.

“I’m grateful that we have a health officer who has provided consistent leadership,” Ozias said.

“We have worked hard to follow her advice throughout the course of the pandemic and are continuing to do so.”

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Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at [email protected].

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