[ back ]
Signal project sizing up 600 utility pol
Signal project sizing up 600 utility poles
By SUE REID
As part of the approval process from the Cleveland Electric Illuminating Co. for Solon's upcoming traffic-signal-upgrade project, the attachment heights for about 600 poles throughout the city need to be measured.
City Council's public works committee authorized city Engineer John J. Busch last week to obtain quotes to complete the Illuminating Co. pole-attachment application.
Mr. Busch said he estimates the cost to come in at less than $20,000.
The form would allow the Illuminating Co. to determine the proper height placement for the proposed-fiber optic cable on each existing pole or whether taller poles need to be installed. It also allows the company to establish the associated fee for the placement.
The walkout form requires that the city list the locations of the affected poles, Mr. Busch explained, along with specifics on the utility lines currently attached to them. The necessary details include the type, size and corresponding height of each utility line, he said.
Mr. Busch said he would like companies more familiar with that type of work to gather the required data.
He also noted that the city's system is antiquated, about 30 to 40 years old, and the use of fiber optics is probably the most state-of-the-art method out there. "We're looking at this as an opportunity to give us the latest and greatest," Mr. Busch said.
"This information is necessary for the Illuminating Co. to move forward with the approval process for this project and to determine the associated fee schedule for the city."
Prior to giving their authorization, some members of the committee posed questions.
Councilman Richard A. Bell noted that, with the recent Bainbridge and Pettibone roads construction projects, poles there were just moved. He asked whether information from existing design sheets can be used for the Illuminating Co.'s forms, rather than reassessing them.
He doesn't want to spend taxpayers' money to have an outside company do the work if the city already has the information, Mr. Bell said. "I would hate a company to do this work and scribble in the same numbers."
Mr. Busch said he had considered having his own staff do the walk-out form, but, based on unknown weather conditions and the fact that they are not geared toward looking at those types of cables, he decided to have an outside company do it.
"I'm trying to point out that some of this work may have already been done," Mr. Bell said.
Mr. Busch said he would check into whether the information the city already has would be sufficient for the Illuminating Co.
Councilman William D. Mooney asked why the city cannot use the existing fiber optics rather than stringing new ones. "It doesn't make sense running two fiber-optic lines," he said. "It seems wasteful."
Mr. Busch said the fiber optics already in place in Solon belong to privately owned businesses, such as AT&T or other phone companies. There most likely would be user fees for the city associated with that, he said.
"My thought process with our project was NOACA was paying for this system, and we would have the opportunity to own our own system without paying monthly user fees to utilize their fiber," Mr. Busch said. "I'm not sure we'd want to combine with a private entity like a business."
"We could at least approach them," Mr. Mooney said.
He also asked whether the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, which works with federal funding in the Cleveland area, would be paying for the form to be done as part of the overall project cost.
Mr. Busch said he did not know.
The NOACA funds for the project become available in fiscal year 2013, which begins July 1, 2012.
Construction could begin as soon as late next summer, Mr. Busch said.
The upgrade is one of the largest projects of its kind involving the traffic lights in the city. It involves upgrading the majority of the city's 46 traffic signals, including complete reconstruction at 16 intersections.
The overall estimated cost of the project is about $7.4 million, of which the city received 80 percent from NOACA's Congestion Mitigation Air Quality program, approximately $5.76 million. The city is responsible for a 20 percent local match, about $1.44 million.
[ back ]