Archive for Wednesday, February 14, 2007

City moves forward on building plans

February 14, 2007

Plans officially have started for a new maintenance shop near the wastewater treatment plant south of East Fourth Street.

The City Council unanimously approved moving forward with the project at Monday's regular meeting, giving the go-ahead to Springsted Advisors to seek for more than $2.4 million in funding for the project. Springsted Advisors is the city's financial adviser.

Tom Calico represented Springsted and told the council purchasing bonds likely would be the best route in securing money for the project.

Design services are included in that figure, with BG Consultants, the city's engineering firm, handling those duties for about $187,000.

Other items included in the project include construction costs for the public works facility, a sand and salt storage shed and financing costs.

On Tuesday, City Administrator Mike Yanez said approving the new facility was an important step for the city.

"I think we have a need to provide adequate and proper work space, as well as storage space for materials and heavy equipment that our city invests in," Yanez said.

With the new structure, all of Tonganoxie's heavy equipment fleet will be housed inside. That currently isn't the case.

And, with the salt and sand storage included in the project, the city's salt and sand supply won't be exposed to the elements, as it is now east of the Tonganoxie City Fire Station.

"It's very exposed to rain and snow," Yanez said. "We can spend our money more wisely purchasing those materials and protecting them from erosion ... stockpiling in a protected environment gives us more bang for our buck and allows us to reduce cost on these things in the future."

The current maintenance shop is near Third and Main in the downtown area. Yanez said he's glad the facility would be built away from the downtown corridor.

"It reduces liability to the city," Yanez said.

And, he noted the city eventually could sell the current shop, for example, to be converted into a retail space.

Bidding for the the maintenance shop is expected to consume most of July, with the construction contract to be awarded in early August. Construction, according to BG Consultants' tentative timeline, would last about eight months, with the project being turned over to the city April 1, 2008.

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