As remaining items are completed in the SOM Center Road resurfacing project, claims amounting to more than $132,656 for vehicle damage are still outstanding.
“It’s an exorbitant amount of claims,” Public Works Director Bill Drsek said.
Individuals submitted vehicle claims for damage resulting from the $1.04 million road project from Route 422 to the railroad bridge due to the unevenness of the road during the construction.
The project was mostly completed by this past November.
Mr. Drsek said Chagrin Valley Paving, the contractor on the job, “needs to be a little more attentive to the complainants’ needs.”
Claims for damage are being reviewed by the contractor and turned over to their insurance company. Mr. Drsek said individuals were informed by letter that they can settle for 50 percent of those claims.
A Solon Police Department cruiser was one of the vehicles damaged and the city refused the 50 percent settlement, Mr. Drsek said.
“According to the contract, the contractor is supposed to resolve all claims,” he explained, “so everything we have received we submitted to them.”
The city’s position is that the contractor’s insurance carrier should be liable for legitimate damage claims. Solon had been named in a small claims suit in Bedford Municipal Court involving this issue but found to be “zero percent negligent,” Mr. Drsek added.
The city’s position is that it is not legally responsible for the claims based on the court decision, Mr. Drsek noted.
Many cars suffered damage due to raised castings along the road as well as raised manholes. In some areas, the castings were raised 3 inches to 3.5 inches higher than the road after the existing pavement was milled off, officials said.
Other aspects of the project are being addressed, city officials said, including water issues in the curb area in front of the SOM Center Plaza. The contractor will be asked to re-asphalt in that area so that the water drains faster, city officials said.
All of the concrete work being done is located in the sidewalk area, so motorists will not have any interruptions.
“That was a really huge project and we are thankful to be done,” Councilwoman Nancy E. Meany said.
No other work is expected along SOM Center Road this year, Mr. Drsek said. The next piece of the road to be addressed in the future is concrete repairs south of Linden Drive, he added.