SHEFFIELD — Mayor Pro Tem Ronnie Wicks said in about six or seven weeks, officials should be opening bids for the construction of a new road, and sewer and water infrastructure for the proposed Inspiration Landing resort project.

City Council members voted to authorize City Clerk Clayton Kelly to solicit the bids. 

Kelly said Wednesday some changes to the contract were being worked out between the city and Engineering Design Technologies (EDT) of Huntsville.

"We can't bid the project until we settle the engineering contract," Kelly said. "The USDA won't let us bid it without it.

Kelly said the contract had to be tweaked to reflect only work being completed on the east side of the proposed Inspiration Landing resort project, which involves a town center with businesses and restaurants, a distillery, a micro-brewery, a movie theater, an indoor event center and an amphitheater.

The city secured a $4.5 million loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to construct a road into the property, and to construct the necessary water and sewer infrastructure.

Wicks was given authorization by the council to negotiate the new contract with EDT, Kelly said.

Wicks said Wednesday he had just signed the new design contract.

"It had to be signed before we sent out the announcement about (the) bids," he said as he left City Hall. "It wasn't anything big. It's been a long time coming, but it's finally here."

Kelly said the contract issue would be worked out quickly, allowing the city to begin advertising for bids. A notice soliciting bids must be placed in a local newspaper and three other newspapers in the state for three weeks, Kelly said.

Kelly said the city will have to negotiate a separate contract for design work on the west side of the project, which includes a marina and a residential component. That part of the project includes a bridge across Spring Creek.

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