Bids on Port of Gulfport buildings run from $41.5 million to $53.5 million

calee@sunherald.comJuly 11, 2014 

TIM ISBELL/SUN HERALD State Port at Gulfport

Bids the state Port of Gulfport received Friday to build a transit shed, office and entry gate on its expanded West Pier ranged from $41.5 million to $53.5 million.

The bids will be evaluated for compliance before the port commission receives them July 25 for approval of a contract.

The bids, from lowest to highest: Florida-based Wharton-Smith Inc., $41,499,000; Southern Industrial Contractors LLC of Rayville, La., $47,037,840.25; Tanner Construction of Laurel, $49,880,827.55; and L&A Contracting Co. of Hattiesburg, $53,548,830.34.

L&A also is involved in West Pier wharf reconstruction and secured the bid for pile installation at tenant DuPont's new facilities on the West Pier.

"We were very pleased, with a project of that magnitude, to be able to see four bids," said the port's executive director, Jonathan Daniels.

The project involves construction of a transit shed for tenants Dole Fresh Fruit Co. and Crowley Liner Services Inc., and Dole's administrative office building and entry gate. The transit shed will have storage for Crowley's dry goods and chillers for Dole's fruit.

The Dole administrative office, plus electrical systems, will sit about 25 feet above sea level for storm-surge protection. The office will be attached to the transit shed. Construction is expected to take 16 months.

Daniels said other building construction projects will be bid separately.

The port broke up the work so smaller contractors would have an opportunity to bid.

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