Thursday, February 28, 2013
Soddy-Daisy is growing, and so are the city’s civil engineering needs.
“We don’t have a full-time engineer of any sort so we have to hire people for that kind of work when needed,” said City Manager Hardie Stulce, who recommended to the City Commission that the city sign a contract with full-service civil consulting firm the Wiser Company.
“As things up here continue to grow and become more congested we’re looking to a professional to provide us with possible solutions as to what we need to do to accommodate increases in traffic, not just in one location, but all over town,” he said.
Soddy-Daisy commissioners voted at their Feb. 21 meeting to authorize the mayor to sign a contract with Wiser. Stulce said signing the contract is like putting Wiser on retainer, similar to what is done with the city attorney.
The company will assist in an overall transportation plan for the city, offering suggestions on items such as four-way stops, bridge replacements and timing of traffic signals.
Prior to signing the contract, the city worked with a variety of civic and mechanical engineering firms on projects such as road work, developments and parks.
“We have stuff come up all the time, and I guess it’s part of the growing pains of a community that doesn’t have a full-time staff for that type of work,” said Stulce, adding that the city has been in need of a consultant for some time.
Wiser consultants will also be available to review plans and help the city with designs and technical drawings or estimates for projects.
“A lot of the transportation monies we apply for, whether they be state, local or federal grants, have to have exact estimates as far as money and time and design for a specific project in order to apply for it,” Stulce said.
Wiser will provide help with grant applications and can offer exact estimates instead of just the ballpark figures previously given by city officials.
“We’re trying to have a professional set of eyes to try to look at things to try to accommodate the increases in traffic and offer suggestions for possible solutions to make things work better,” he said. “Many larger cities and counties have full-time staff to do such work. We dont have the amount of work that justifies employing somebody full-time, so we just entered into an agreement with them to provide us with those services as needed on a case-by-case basis.”