Construction Somewhere Ahead : Planet Money A project stalls in Tumwater, Washington, when the contractor goes broke.
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Construction Somewhere Ahead

Getting ready for "a nightmarish summer of dust." Kelly Adams hide caption

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Kelly Adams

Kelly Adams checks in from Tumwater:

My economic indicator is $4.29 million. That's the budget for a road works project we here in Tumwater, Washington, have been suffering through on one of our major arterials. A couple of months ago all construction stopped when the contractor abruptly went out of business.

Littlerock Road runs north/south, parallel to I-5. It's been a two-lane road forever, connecting the rural south end to the strip-mall center of Tumwater. Suburban growth has made it a mess so the City of Tumwater decided to upgrade the northern strip.

Where this leaves the project and the community is in limbo. The project (aside from utilities installation) is completely halted and remains a mess of patched up roads, detours, dirt, dust and hay on the verges. We've been told the bond-holding company will now have to decide what action will be taken, from assigning a contractor to take over the project or return to a bid stage. Either way, it is unlikely to restart construction before the end of the year. What a mess!