The Golden Hammer Staff Reports
Conroe and The Woodlands, November 25 – Precinct 3 Montgomery County Commissioner James Noack stretched his Commissioner Precinct’s allocation of the 2015 road bond funds by millions of dollars to cover high priority projects through careful management and efficiency. Unlike other Montgomery County Commissioners who seem to give road vendors carte blanche in charging the taxpayers for their work, Noack insisted on maximum returns on the citizens’ investments.
“We were able to do everything we told the people we were going to do plus a few more projects,” Noack explained to his colleagues on the Commissioners Court during the Tuesday, November 17, 2020, Regular Meeting. Noack later told The Golden Hammer, Montgomery County’s leading daily newspaper, “I insisted that contractors give us their best prices and performance on all of the Precinct 3 road bond jobs. My staff and I watched them constantly from contract letting until the end of each project.”
In 2015, County taxpayers approved a $280 million road bond. Precinct 3 received an $84 million allocation. Noack’s summary of his work was that total expenditures for Precinct 3 under his road bond management were $84,802,120.49, which included interest for the $82,825,121.20 worth of road projects. By saving more than $10 million on three of the major projects, Noack was able to make funds available for other projects not originally included within the bond list.
Noack told the Commissioners Court, “The first project started and completed was the Rayford Road project which came in at $53.3 million, less than the initial projection of $60 million…The next project completed was the Woodlands Parkway widening for $7.2 million, which was almost $6 million less than originally planned.”
On the Robinson Road diamond interchange, the original cost was $3.09 million for design work alone, but Noack worked with engineering vendors to bring the entire construction of the project, including both design and actual work, in at $3.1 million.
Other projects within the Precinct 3 road bond list included:
- The Lake Woodlands Drive widening project, which came in at $2.1 million upon completion.
- Birnham Woods Drive widening at $4.4 million, which Noack explained, “we were able to pick up from cost savings from other projects.”
- The Elan Boulevard project which was $1.8 million Noack was able to utilize from cost savings of other projects.
- A $5.584 million widening project for Kuykendahl Drive.
- $759,000 in intersection improvements throughout Precinct 3.
Noack further explained, “The one project left is the Gosling Bridge expansion with Harris County. Commissioner Cagle and I got together and we’re going to give them $4 million with their paying over half of the total of the bridge. The construction will start in the first quarter of next year under Commissioner Cagle’s direction.”
The Rayford Road widening from Waterbend Cove to Birnham Woods is still underway.
Noack commented that “the Major Thoroughfare Plan currently in progress will help us save millions of dollars in the future and give our community much needed planning.”