MONROE, La. (KTVE/KARD) – The Monroe City Council passes a resolution that would reject all bids for the construction of the Louisiana Purchase Exhibit at the Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo. This was Phase I of the zoo’s Master Plan.

The rejection comes after the City of Monroe Purchasing Division considered the request after the bids exceeded the total project funds.

Phase I includes new pathways and new exhibits that will feature otters, beavers and alligators.

The city was advertising for bids to construct this area, but the city engineer, Mongan McCallister, says the bids exceeded the total project cost of $1.1 million. 

“Our bids came in and they were over three times that amount so we have over three million. And of course the cost of materials and services we’ve just seen an escalation of those prices. There’s a lot of things that play into that. We will step back and see what we can do for the project to move forward.”

Phase I of the zoo’s Master Plan is estimated at $1.1 million, and the master plan is expected to be completed over a 12-year period.