MILLINOCKET, Maine — An Old Town company will design and oversee the creation of a $625,000 walking and biking trail along Millinocket Stream slated for completion by November.
Millinocket councilors voted 7-0 on Thursday to award the James W. Sewall Co. a $62,500 contract for the trail work. The council followed Town Manager Eugene Conlogue’s recommendation after he and two other town officials had reviewed 15 bids and interviewed the top three finalists as part of the vetting process.
“The Sewall Co. is an excellent and highly rated firm,” Conlogue said during the meeting. “I don’t think you could do better than them.”
The 129-year-old engineering and mapping company has completed many projects around the state. Earlier this year, the state tapped Sewall to map broadband service and availability throughout Maine as part of a $25.4 million federal project aimed at expanding Maine’s high-speed Internet network.
Sewall has provided civil site design and permitting services for the $100 million, 57-megawatt wind farm slated for Stetson Mountain; the $55 million, 42-megawatt wind farm on Mars Hill — the state’s first commercial-scale wind site; and for TransCanada’s $320 million, 132-megawatt project on Kibby Mountain. That proj-ect will be finished this fall, according to the company’s Web site, sewall.com.
Sewall specializes in engineering, aerial photography, imaging and photogrammetry, geospatial solutions and forestry and natural resource consulting.
The town contracted with the Maine Department of Transportation in October to build the trail, which will run about eight-tenths of a mile along both sides of the stream between Stearns High and Granite Street schools.
The town’s plan calls for spending $500,000 in federal grants, $80,625 in DOT funds and $44,375 in town funds, of which some will be in-kind work done by town workers. The federal grants were left over from an earlier project that never materialized.
Councilors said they expected the project would beautify downtown while providing a tourist draw and a recreational outlet.
Councilor Jimmy Busque said he wanted to ensure that it didn’t interfere with a nearby informal trail used by all-terrain vehicles. Conlogue said it wouldn’t. The project will feature a dual trail system, with a paved area for walkers, joggers and bicyclists and a separate gravel area for ATV riders.
The project will go out to bid by midsummer and be completed by Oct. 29, the contract states. Design work should begin shortly, Conlogue said.