Regional
12:16 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Mayor Moves Forward With NAPA Contract, High-Speed Rail Construction To Start Soon

Springfield Mayor Mike Houston says silence from the council about reaffirming the NAPA contract signals permission to choose how to handle the $3,000,000 deal. 

Credit City of Springfield

He’s moving forward with it.

Springfield City Council had the chance to send a message to the mayor, but remained silent during the committee of the whole meeting on the issue.

After the meeting, Ward One Alderman Frank Edwards said because the city didn’t seek out bids from other companies, the NAPA contract puts the city in a bind.

“Because anything we do do brings further, or more, litigation.  And the mayor’s set us in course, I think, for litigation.  And either way we go, either way we do, I think adds fuel to the fire,” Edwards said.

Under the contract, NAPA will be the sole supplier for the city’s consolidated fleet garage.

The city’s also considering an ordinance to eliminate sick leave payout upon retirement  for non-union employees hired after the first of July.

Springfield is also opening bids this week to start construction on the 10th and Carpenter street railroad underpass, according to Mayor Mike Houston.

The federal funded $14,400,000 grant for an underpass in Springfield is a part of the 110-mph Amtrak route between Chicago and St. Louis.

Houston says he expects to break ground on the site in August.

“That is a 24 month construction project, so that by September, 2016, the project will be complete.  At that point we would be looking to move down to tenth and Ash street to construct another underpass at that location,” Houston said.

The council approved several other ordinances pertaining to the 10th street rail corridor improvements.  The work being done is a part of moving train traffic from the 3rd street rail corridor in downtown Springfield east, as train traffic increases in speed and number.