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Board approves bids for fire garage

Construction on project could begin within 30 days

June 23, 2010 | 08:52 AM
Walworth — It took two rounds of bids, but on Monday night, the Village Board approved the contractors who will build a new Fire Department garage.

In March, the village received bids for the construction of a new garage, which will be located behind the fire department building at 227 N. Main St. Those bids came in between $141,000 and $256,000, which is much higher than the $80,000 to $90,000 price tag officials were hoping for.

After the bids came in higher than expected the village regrouped and changed some plans searching for a lower price tag.

Originally, the garage was going to be made of wood, but to lower costs the village changed the project to a metal pole building. A metal structure would look similar to the village's Public Work's building, 121 Badger St.

Construction on a new garage should begin within the next 30 days. Fire Chief Andy Long said after construction begins — weather depending — the new building could be complete within six weeks.

Instead of hiring a general contractor for the project, the village is hiring seven individual contractors to complete the project. Long and Emergency Service Director Chris Severt will oversee the construction.

The total of the individual bids is $94,314. The lowest bid from a general contractor was $116,400.

"That is the walking in the door, everything cost," Long said Monday night.

Contracts were awarded to Swederski Concrete, $15,790; Midway, $3,000; Canfield Construction, $49,884; Hartwig, $4,950; Power Tech, $10,250; North Walworth, $2,005; and Odling Construction, $8,4355.

Odling Construction was involved in the village's Beloit Street project. The Beloit Street project went way over budget and the quality of the road is now being question.

Despite Odling's involvement with that project, Village President Todd Watters said he is "reasonably comfortable" with the company providing the excavating on the fire department's new garage.

"It's a small enough project and we will be doing the oversight," he said.

The village plans on paying for the project using impact fees and contributions from the village's fire department, which it earns during its annual fundraiser.

Why is the project needed

Currently, storing the vehicles that are in the village's fire department is challenging and it is difficult to perform maintenance work inside of the garage.

With the new garage, each vehicle will have its own exit. The vehicles that will be stored in the building are the grass rig, an air unit, a police squad car and the police speed trailer.

Long also said the fire department is purchasing an ATV, which will be stored in the new building.

This isn't the first time the fire department has pitched a new building idea to the Village Board.

More than a year ago, Long and Severt asked the board to consider a new building, but their request fell on deaf ears.

In November, Long said the fire garage is more than a Band-Aid effort and should meet the department's needs for at least the next 10 years.

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