MANSFIELD -- A state transportation official bearing answers and assurances eased the concerns Monday of Mansfield City Council members about two major road projects that are running longer than anticipated.Particularly frustrating has been the $13 million U.S. 287 project of turnaround bridges and new service roads, in which the contractor has opted to pay a $1,400-a-day penalty since April to leave its final tasks unfinished while its crews work on other projects.The other project will rebuild a stretch of Farm Road 1187 just west of Main Street.It was projected to be finished in February, but a late redesign now has pushed that date back to the summer, when city officials are concerned that it may interfere with back-to-school traffic."Obviously the school traffic is a significant issue," Maribel Chavez, a Fort Worth district engineer of the Texas Department of Transportation, said at the council meeting. "And we will work hard to make sure to minimize the impact there."City Manager Clayton Chandler emphasized that the city has no frustration with TxDot."It's with the contractor," he said. "Maribel and her staff has worked with us the whole way."TxDot is managing both projects and is using the same contractor -- Lone Star Civil Engineering -- for both.Lone Star has finished the 287 turnaround bridges, at the Walnut Creek Drive and East Broad crossovers, and the new service roads, all of which are in use now. But Lone Star has yet to finish the landscaping around the new city monuments, the irrigation system and touch-up painting on the bridges.Chavez said that should be finished by the end of November.TxDot has defended the contractor, saying it has done good work on both projects.Lone Star did not have a representative at the council meeting and has not returned phones calls for comment over the past several weeks.The city has no complaints about Lone Star's work on the 1187 project, which is rebuilding the two-lane asphalt road with bar ditches into a four-lane concrete road with medians, from just west of Main Street to Newt Patterson Road.The delay occurred because of late changes requested by TxDot to reduce the road height and take care of unforeseen drainage issues and prepare better connections with business and residential driveways.Also at the meeting, Chavez said that, at Chandler's request, her agency next summer will do an asphalt overlay to smooth patches where old road surfaces meet with new surfaces in the U.S. 287 project.