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Award for U.S. 58 bridge reduced to $12 million

The contractor for the Clarksville bypass on U.S. 58 is due $12 million, $9.2 million less than he originally was awarded, Norfolk Circuit Judge Charles E. Poston has ruled.

The Virginia Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of Virginia ruled that Poston had erred in excusing AMEC Civil LLC from the formal requirements of Virginia Code § 33.1-386, which requires a written claim at the time of a dispute. Poston ruled originally that the Virginia Department of Transportation was aware of AMEC’s claims and was not prejudiced by the lack of formal notice.

AMEC contended that it was due $24 million on top of the contract price of $72.5 million price of the 5.3-mile, 11-bridge project that included a 4,800-foot span over the John H. Kerr Reservoir.

The contract called for completion of the project in November 2003, but it was not finished until June 2005.

The Supreme Court held that Poston had properly awarded damages for delay because water in the lake was higher than normal for a longer period of time than VDOT and the contractor had contemplated. It sent the case back to him for recalculation of damages in light of its September 2010 opinion.

Poston analyzed the damages with the benefit of Supreme Court guidance and issued his opinion last week. He was assigned to the case because its scope overwhelmed the circuit judge in the 10th Judicial Circuit. Although the case continued to be designated as a Mecklenburg case, the trial and much of the related litigation occurred in Norfolk.

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