TREASURE ISLAND — With the new City Center renovation project in its final stages and scheduled for completion in mid-June, city commissioners approved $526,720 in additional costs for the facility, which will serve as a meeting place and City Hall.
The city originally budgeted $8 million for the project and paid $6,421,145 to purchase the property, Assistant Public Works Director Stacy Boyles told city commissioners during a special meeting March 15.
The City Center budget item was the only thing on the agenda during the special meeting, because the commission will hold its work and regular sessions on Tuesday, March 22.
Boyles said a construction contract amendment with New Vista Builders Group was needed to ratify approved change orders and to add other terms and conditions that were not initially included.
“In addition, the proposed amendment approves contractor requests for increases in material costs due to COVID-19,” she said.
There are several pending change orders that need to be approved quickly so that additional unforeseen work can take place without impacting the project schedule, she told commissioners.
Examples of contractor requests include additional demolition costs of $23,146, a structural curtain wall support at $20,378, curtain wall gap closure per fire code at $36,607, curtain wall waterproofing, $40,232, and an unforeseen drainage pipe conflict, $2,763. In addition, the city installed fire alarm strobe lights for $5,347.
Generally, a curtain wall is a non-structural covering on windows that traditionally serves as a temperature control device and protects against wind, hurricane, storm, tornado and other damages.
“Many additional circumstances have arisen, including mold within existing drywall layers and the need to replace several damaged window panes, which were previously hidden by walls,” Boyles said.
In addition, information technology and security contingencies such as data center wiring, card reader programming software and printers and video monitoring software costs have risen.
To cover these and other unforeseen conditions, city staff recommended increasing the construction contingency fund from the original 6% to approximately 20%, “which is more appropriate for a large renovation project,” she said.
The city had expected to occupy the building around the end of 2021. Due to contractor staffing and material shortages, the latest projected completion is June 16, Boyles told commissioners.
“A total budget amendment of $526,720 is requested to appropriate additional funding,” the assistant public works director said.
The breakdown of the amendment is $419,739 for additional construction contingency; $41,981 in materials increases; $35,000 in architectural fees; $15,000 in IT/security fees; and a miscellaneous contingency of $15,000.
The sources of the new money will be interest generated within the restricted City Hall Remodel Fund of $33,861; $216,000 from the capital renewal and replacement fund; and $276,859 from the unassigned balance within the general fund.
Boyles said unexpected revenue from parking and CARES Act-related grants would provide “a more than adequate amount to cover the additional appropriation.”
Commissioners passed all project budget changes unanimously, with Commissioners Saleene Partridge and Beth Wetzel absent.