The margin for winning a road improvement bid has become even tighter than the super-slim profit margins typically figured into jobs during this slow economy.
Ranger Construction recently turned in a $2,503,302 estimate for three phases of infrastructure improvements in Palm Beach County. A desired winning margin is less than five percent, ensuring that not too much money was left on the table, while reassuring estimators that nothing was inadvertently left out that could lead to unexpected costs.
There was no such worry on this day. The second-place contractor’s bid was just slightly too high — missing out by only $2,054, or less than 1/10th of one percent!
But the thrill of a close victory was turned upside down on the next bid opened that day. Ranger’s gotta-be-low-enough bid of $5,980,272.50 for the county’s annual milling and resurfacing work was edged out when another contractor’s estimate came in just a fraction lower, taking the job by a mere $263.50 — less than 1/100 of one percent!