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LOCKPORT – Plans to build new sidewalks near schools and to replace water and sewer lines in two subdivisions were placed on hold Monday, as the Town Board learned that bids far exceeded budgeted cost estimates.

The “Safe Routes to School” project drew far less interest from contractors than the town had expected. Town Engineer Robert D. Klavoon said that only three bids were received, even though the town solicited offers from 18 construction companies.

The lowest bid, according to Klavoon, was $80,000 higher than the $344,000 amount of the state grant that the town had received.

Supervisor Marc R. Smith said the sidewalk project may be set aside until fall, when paving contractors will presumably be less busy and might be looking for another project.

The sidewalks were to be installed on Locust Street Extension and East High Street in the town and on Hi-Point Drive and Corinthia Street in the city.

A bid package for replacing water and sewer lines in the Lincoln Village and Carlisle Gardens subdivision also ended in disappointment.

The town budgeted $350,000 for the work, Klavoon said, but the lone bid topped $600,000.

Klavoon said he will meet with the bidder to discuss ways of trimming the price.

Meanwhile, Councilwoman Patricia Dufour proposed a 30-by-50-foot storage building in Day Road Park to house the soccer bleachers and benches and snow removal equipment.

That’s larger than the 20-by-40-foot building that the board discussed May 21, but smaller than the 30-by-60-foot metal pole barn the town was planning behind Town Hall until a May 11 fire destroyed the electronics recycling shed.

The pole barn was supposed to have held the e-waste as well as storing town equipment and making space for dogs picked up by the dog-control officer.

Dufour said Highway Superintendent David J. Miller and Director of Operations Daniel Dodge wanted a bigger building, but Dufour said, “Personally, I think 1,500 square feet with storage upstairs should be adequate.”

The board decided to ask New York State Electric & Gas Corp. to install a power pole to hold a security light outside the storage building, as Smith and Councilman Paul W. Siejak voiced concerns about security.

Siejak said the e-waste fire came as the town was having a record-setting month for electronics drop-offs. Even though the statistics cover only 11 days, more than 10,000 pounds of appliances were dropped off during May.

“People were just bringing truckloads,” Smith said, “which was fine when we were being paid for it.”

But the town gave up a payment for electronics last fall in exchange for hiring a company that would continue to take tube televisions, which are a glut on the recycling market.

That service ended with the fire, which was blamed on an overheated battery in one of the items dropped off. Now, town residents must take their recyclable electronics to a private disposer, such as the Niagara County Redemption Center in Wrights Corners.

email: tprohaska@buffnews.com