Thursday, July 28, 2011

Firm asks for $38K more for pavilion

By Tiffeny Owens Staff Writer at The Decatur Daily

The Decatur architectural firm that designed the Ingalls Harbor pavilion is asking the city for an additional $38,000 to complete the project.

The removal of unsuitable dirt at the work site cost an extra $26,402 alone. The Decatur City Council will vote Monday on three change orders, submitted by Godwin, Barnett, Woods, P.C. of Decatur, to amend its contract with the firm, which would increase the pavilion’s budget by $37,867.

The new costs would be covered by the $250,000 contingency for unforeseen expenses that the city included in the contract with GBW and contractor Fite Building Co.

“We went ahead and filed these change orders for the council to review now, instead of at the end of the project,” said Tom Chappell, assistant director of Decatur’s Parks and Recreation Department.

Overseeing upkeep
The department will oversee the pavilion’s maintenance and upkeep. The Decatur-Morgan County Convention and Visitors Bureau plans to hold weigh-ins inside the structure for bass tournaments at Ingalls Harbor and also market it for large events. The facility will host the 27th annual Gala fundraiser for the Decatur General Hospital Foundation in December. The facility will also be available for rent to host parties, banquets and receptions.

Once completed, the $3 million, 27,000-square-foot, open-air pavilion will be more than twice the size of Decatur’s largest meeting space.

Workers were finishing the roof this week, and stonework on the fireplaces, columns and around the foundation is nearly done, Chappell said. The project is still on track for opening Oct. 21, he said.

Change orders
The change orders included features that have been re-configured to save money and others that have incurred additional costs. The biggest money-saver was the elimination of Decatur Utilities’ construction help, which totaled $25,902, according to the change order documents. But the removal of 2,182 cubic yards of dirt — at $12.10 per cubic yard — for the south parking lot was the biggest expense, the documents show. In all, contractors had to remove 4,086 cubic yards of unsuitable dirt over the project’s bid, which provided payment for just 1,500 cubic yards.

“You really don’t know how much soil is unsuitable until you get in there and start digging,” said Chappell. “You’ve got to get down to the compact red clay so you don’t have settling problems with the foundation.”

Dirt for project
Decatur’s Waters Brothers Contractors Inc. used some of the dirt for projects while the rest was hauled to the Morgan County Regional Landfill and used as ground cover.

The city is financing the pavilion by borrowing $2 million from its reserves and another $1.6 million from landfill fund.

Other costs
Other additional costs included:

■$9,544 to convert a large men’s toilet to a small men’s toilet and family toilet and additional fire alarm and electrical changes required by the city’s building department.
■$6,951 to add emergency voice/alarm communication, or EVAC, capability to the fire alarm system.
■$1,540 to add three gas log starters to each fireplace.
■$880 to remove existing railroad tracks from the northeast portion of the site.

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