Contractor defaults on Stanly County bridge project

Published 2:37 pm Friday, February 25, 2022

The contractor who was working on a $844,000 project to replace a bridge on Bethany Road over Town Creek in Stanly County has been found in default of its contract, according to the Department of Transportation.

The contract with National Bridge Builders LLC, of Kernersville, has been terminated by the N.C. Department of Transportation for the contractor’s failure to provide project milestones with an action plan to complete the project, and provide labor, equipment and materials to finish the project.

“We understand the inconvenience this causes for residents and business owners in the area, and drivers who have had to detour since work started last spring,” said Division 10 Engineer Brett Canipe. “We will work with the bonding company and a future contractor to complete the project as safely and quickly as possible.”

The department has well-established procedures in place and experience in completing projects with bonding companies.

For all NCDOT contracts, the state agency requires the contractor to have a bonding company in case NCDOT is forced to terminate a contractor’s right to work on a project.

In this case, the bonding company, Frankenmuth Insurance Company, is now responsible for the project to replace the existing bridge, built in 1954, with a 70-foot-long cored slab structure.

The project delay and shift in contractors will not cost the state any additional funds, as a bond secures the completion of the original contract and any additional costs.

Over the next several months, Frankenmuth will collect information, documents and data before finding another contractor to complete the work. Drivers will continue using the posted detour along U.S. 52, Springdale Road, Austin Road and Old Salisbury Road until the bridge is open to traffic.

No construction activity will occur until a new contractor is hired to take over the job. NCDOT crews will maintain the roads, erosion control and other aspects until the contractor is hired.

NCDOT awarded the bridge contract in May 2021, with an original completion date of March 29, 2022.

An updated completion timeline will be determined when a new contractor is hired.