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Boreal Community Media

County delays plans for Hovland garage, ice rink warming house

Jul 26, 2018 04:49PM ● By Editor

Story by Joe Friedrichs of WTIP Radio- Thu, 07/26/2018 - 2:38pm

The proposed upgrades to the public works garage in Hovland and a warming house for the skating rink at the Cook County Community Center might not take place this year as previously scheduled.
Delays to the projects come after attempts to ‘value engineer’ the bids received by the county were unsuccessful. In this instance, the term ‘value engineer’ means county staff reviewed where costs could be cut while not sacrificing the overall goal or purpose of the projects, according to County Administrator Jeff Cadwell.

“The process included reviewing construction standards, construction materials and mechanical systems,” Cadwell told WTIP. “We changed specifications where we thought we could cut costs without sacrificing the usability and efficiency of the project.”

On June 26, the Cook County Board of Commissioners voted to accept the lowest bid on the county’s proposed major capital projects, contingent on the ability to ‘value engineer’ each of the projects within the fiscal constraints of the allocated budget. Attempts to negotiate the two contracts to meet the budget constraints were made over the last few weeks and were subsequently rejected when price tags remained too high.

“While it is unfortunate that these projects are not able to move ahead at this time, the bids received are currently unrealistic for Cook County,” said Board Chair Ginny Storlie. “And it would not be fiscally responsible to move forward beyond the budget that was allocated.”

The following update was presented to the county board July 24 by Cadwell:

Hovland Public Works Facility
Cook County had a budget of $1,244,000 for the Hovland Public Works facility. The low bid received would have put the project at $1,630,253. After value engineering, that total was $1,525,374. At this point, the county has rejected all bids and plan to re-bid the project in February of 2019.

Community Center Warming House
The Community Center Warming House project had a total projected cost of $310,000. Bids received brought the cost of the project to $546,379. The county has rejected all bids and will work with the lowest bidder to develop specifications that allow them to develop a building that serves anticipated program needs and comes in below the new increased bidding requirements of $175,000. The county hopes to have an update on this process within 30 days.

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