As part of the final phases of the build-out of the new Herb Savage Bridge on Collier Boulevard, the city has awarded the contract for landscaping to Affordable Landscaping and Design Services on Marco Island.

The contract for the work, which will essentially complete the bridge replacement project, is for $327,066.55. Affordable is awaiting permits from the city to begin.

The contract will entail reinstalling a sprinkler system on the approaches on both the north and southbound sides of the newly constructed bridges.

“We will be using a “Florida Friendly” approach to the landscaping on this project,” said Albert Benarroch, the owner of Affordable. “This will minimize the type of maintenance and the cost for irrigation water on the project.

“The use of the large mounds that were previously utilized on the medians is being replaced with a flatter surface to help in both the irrigation and the ability for the crews to maintain those areas,” said Benarroch.

Low-level ground cover, mulch, bushes and some flowering plants are also in the plans, as are some palms on both the north and southbound sides of the bridge.

In addition to the approaches to the bridge, Affordable will also be rebuilding the small Jane Hittler Park that was used for staging during the bridge construction.

Affordable will reuse some of the pavers that were in place prior to construction. Those pavers were saved for reuse during this phase of the project and others will be brought in to continue the walkways under the bridge, which will allow pedestrians to traverse from the eastbound to westbound sides of Collier Boulevard without crossing the busy roadway.

This safe access will also be provided for on the northbound side of the bridge with a similar pathway under the bridge.

Greenery, as well as other plantings will be replaced in Jane Hittler Park. This will be in addition to the benches and the shelter that will overlook Smokehouse Bay.

“We hope this will provide our bikers and walkers with a great place to sit and enjoy the overlook that this park provides of Smokehouse Bay,” said Tim Pinter, director of public works.

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