643.1 Utilities - Status and Liability Acceptance

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Utility Status Letter

Construction of and improvements made to the state highway system require negotiations with various utility companies (including cities and railroads) for right of way, construction easements, and adjustments that may be required to their facilities to eliminate conflicts with the proposed highway improvement. These negotiations must also comply with MHTC policy.

643.1.1 Responsibility

It is the responsibility of district personnel to negotiate with local utility companies, cross-state pipelines and other interstate utility facilities for right of way, easements, and adjustment agreements. Design personnel are readily available to assist with these negotiations.

643.1.2 Utility Status

The District Utilities Engineer will write a Utility Status Letter for every project that requires the adjustment of utilities. This status will be provided to the Project Manager for inclusion with submittal of the final plans to Design.

Effective May 16, 2014, projects with “No Utility Impacts” such as overlays, striping, etc., no longer need a Utility Clearance Certification Letter or Utility Status JSP. The District Final Plans Submittal Form (Form D-12) is used for these projects. In the D-12, under Project Details – "Utilities", the note ”NO” is selected and under "Status", select "Clear".

All projects must be cleared prior to a monthly Bid Opening. The Transportation Project Manager must submit the Utility Status Letter to the Design Division at least 10 weeks prior to the bid opening date. Utilities “clear” is defined as:

  1. All utilities are physically adjusted on the project. Or,
  2. Utility construction work is active and has been completed to such a point that no impact would be expected to the road contractor. The status of the work is given in the utility job special provision. Or,
  3. Utilities are not expected to be adjusted by the notice to proceed date for the road project, but the utility work will have no impact on the progress of the road contractors work. Or,
  4. Utilities must be adjusted after the road contractor completes stage construction. A job special provision, reviewed by Chief Counsel’s office, must be included in the bid proposal to properly advise bidders. Or,
  5. Utility adjustments, plans and specifications, are included in the bid documents for the road project. A utility agreement (UT4) must be executed.

643.1.3 Liability Acceptance Procedure

For guidance on acceptance of liability, refer to the Acceptance of Liability Policy at the Chief Counsels Office SharePoint page.

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