Selbyville opens up process for wasterwater bids

After more than three years of planning and designing its new wastewater plant, Selbyville opened the bids on Thursday in preparation to construct the state-funded project. All four bids received came in above the estimated construction cost of $1.3 million, ranging from $1.8 million to $3.2 million to replace the outdated, existing plant on Polly Branch Road.

Chuck Hauser, town engineer working for Davis, Bowen and Friedel, announced the proposed bids at Monday’s Selbyville Town Council meeting.

“The existing (plant) is in need of replacement,” he said. “We’ll take a look at the bids and talk to the lowest bidder.”

Greensburg Environmental, a Pennsylvania company, proposed the lowest bid of $1,853,086, while JJID Inc., out of Bear, Del., proposed the most costly build, at $3,273,000 to build the plant. It will be able to process 3.25 million gallons of water per day.

Hauser said that he will talk to state officials about funding for the project and present a recommendation to accept a bid within the next month.

After the town accepts a bid, it will take about one year to build the new plant, which will sit near the old plant on Polly Branch Road. Hauser said he expects it to be up and running by May of 2007.

“We’ll be back to council next month and be in position to offer a recommendation,” he said.

Council addresses parking issue

After talking about the issue last month but shying away from making a decision, council agreed to draft an ordinance regarding Selbyville residents parking on both sides of four narrow streets in the town. The ordinance would go to a council vote next month.

Selbyville Chief of Police W. Scott Collins gave a presentation, saying that the town’s McCabe, Dukes, Hoosier and William streets are less than 30 feet wide at certain points, which causes safety issues if residents park on both sides of the streets.

“When you have a 28-, 29-foot-wide road and you have parking on both sides, that’s a real safety issue,” Collins said. “Especially trying to get one of the new fire trucks through.”

Collins suggested that council adopt an ordinance that only allows residents to park on the opposite side from the fire hydrants on those four streets.

He also said that only the narrow parts of the streets should be included in the ordinance. South of Route 17 on William Street, for example, the roadway is 35 feet wide and a parking regulation is not needed there, he said.

Councilman G. Frank Smith III liked the idea so much that he wanted to adopt the ordinance after the chief’s presentation on Monday. “I think we should go along with the chief of police and adopt it,” he said.

Mayor Clifton C. Murray said, however, that the council would have to draft an ordinance on which to vote on at its March meeting. But he also supported the idea, as did the rest of council.

“I think it makes a lot of sense,” Mayor Murray said. “There’s just not enough room.”

Strawberry Center

Alvin French, of the Georgetown development firm French and Ryan Inc., attended Monday’s meeting to talk about the proposed “Strawberry Center,” a combined retail and corporate office development on U.S. Route 113, next to Captain’s Pizza in Selbyville.

The proposed development includes a front building on the corner of Hoosier Street and Route 113 that would feature 25,000 square feet of retail space. Another, 52,000-square-foot building behind the all-retail area would stand two stories tall, with more retail area on the first level and corporate offices on the second.

“We’re looking forward to it,” Selbyville councilman Jay C. Murray said at Monday’s meeting. “It looks like a good place for the town.”

French said he has submitted the plans to the appropriate state agencies, including DelDOT and the fire marshall, and is waiting for final approval before he returns to the town for the building permits.

“I think we’re on the 1-yard line,” French said. “I feel confident.”

Murray supported the plan and expressed similar confidence.

“So far, the plans are meeting all requirements of the town,” he said. “We’re sending all of the plans to the town engineer. Once you get (state’s approval), we’ll review it from the town aspect. It’s looking up to me.”