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Lyseth Construction Bid Goes to Board May 7

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Lyseth Construction Bid Goes to Board May 7
Posted on 05/06/2019
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At its Tuesday, May 7, meeting, the Portland Board of Public Education will be asked to take three actions regarding school renovation projects. Two relate to the Lyseth Elementary School renovation project, and one involves the three other elementary schools slated to be renovated in the future.

The Board’s business meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in the City Council Chambers at City Hall.

Although bids for renovating Lyseth came in higher than expected in April, significant savings have since been identified to reduce the bid overrun. The Board on Tuesday will be asked to approve the lowest bid, allocating money from the Building for Our Future projects reserve fund and the Lyseth project contingency fund for the bid overrun. The Board also will be asked to vote on sending out requests for proposals (RFPs) for three future elementary school renovation projects now in order to better manage costs in the future.

Portland voters in November 2017 passed a $64.4 million bond to renovate Lyseth, Longfellow, Presumpscot and Reiche elementary schools.

Lyseth has been designated as the first school to be renovated, with a total cost pegged at nearly $15.3 million. That total included an estimated $11,732,800 in construction costs and also other costs such as design, permitting and consultant work. The construction bids opened April 16 came in higher than the estimate, due to a heated construction environment. Ducas Construction bid $14.7 million, while Hardypond Construction was the low bidder at $14.5 million.

The Board on Tuesday will be asked to approve the Hardypond Construction bid. The District Advisory Building Committee, formed to oversee all four construction projects, recommended on April 25 that the Board accept that bid, which came in more than $2.7 million higher than anticipated. However, some of that overrun – $587,000 – will be covered by the Lyseth project’s contingency fund, reducing the overrun to about $2.1 million. 

The advisory group asked staff to work with the contractor to review cost projections and reduce as much as $750,000 from the project.  Since last week, staff have worked with the Harriman architect team and HardypPond and identified significant savings in the project.

As a result, the anticipated $2.1 million overrun could be further reduced to under $1 million.  The Board will learn about the specific savings at Tuesday’s meeting and will be asked to cover the remaining bid overrun by allocating that amount from a Building for Our Future projects reserve fund intended to serve all four school renovation projects.

The board previously voted in January to authorize using an additional $550,000 from the Building for Our Future projects reserve fund for stormwater mitigation work at Lyseth that must be completed in conjunction with the construction work.

To better manage the costs of the Reiche, Presumpscot and Longfellow projects, the Board also will asked on Tuesday to approve sending out RFPs for an architectural-engineering firm to design all three projects. Having just one architect for the three schools will help guide the Board in deciding on the phasing of the projects and result in some economies of scale.

To view an agenda and board packet for Tuesday's meeting, click HERE.