Although the Redwood County Board of Commissioners have not yet fully committed to the Redwood County law enforcement center (LEC) remodeling and addition project, it took a step toward making that project a reality this past Tuesday at its board meeting.
After hearing the most current plan for the project from John MacNamara of Wold Architects, who is working with the county as it considers the plan, the board approved the schematic design plan.
Schematic design provides the basic framework of the project including demolition, expansion and alteration within the facility, but it does not offer specifics.
The plan presented to the board is based on discussions Mac-Namara has held with those who work in the building, including the sheriff’s department, jail administration and the police department taking their thoughts into consideration as the layout of the newly upgraded facility is developed.
MacNamara said there were a few changes to the design, including the addition of approximately 100 square feet, with that space being added for storage, as well as other spaces for personnel.
“All in all, the building is the same as what you have seen in the past as we have presented it to you,” Mac-Namara said.
The plan includes a newly developed space for the sheriff’s department, with the police department taking over the current space both the sheriff’s department and police department share. It also includes demolition of the sheriff’s residence and an expanded area for jail booking and administration.
“We spoke with the department of corrections a few weeks ago and they approved the plan,” said MacNamara to the board, adding that gives them the green light to move forward with further detail of the plan.
MacNamara said the project could be conducted in phases which would allow for work to continue in the LEC in areas not being worked on in each phase.
Commissioner Al Kokesch suggested MacNamara look into the costs of housing prisoners off site and having the departments move to see if that would lessen the cost of the project as it could all be done at one time.
The initial budget for the project, as directed by the county board is $3.5 million, and Mac-Namara said the budget as it currently exists is a bit over that amount, but he said as the project continues there ought to be ways to help get it back where the board would like it to be. The current estimate is $3.625 million, with the total for the actual construction at $3.21 million.
With schematic design now approved the project moves into the design development phase, which is scheduled to be completed by the end of this year.
Should the process continue on schedule, according to information presented by Mac-Namara, the project would go out for bids in March 2013 with the work scheduled to start in April 2013. The project would then, based on that tentative schedule, be completed by the end of 2013.
Page 2 of 2 - There are some unknowns, said Mac-Namara, such as the number of utilities which are currently in the alley that may have to be moved. How much that might cost is still to be determined.
In other action at its meeting Tuesday, the county board:
• Accepted a grant of $2,298 from the county veterans service program.
• Tabled action on the swayback bridge project grant agreement.