PD renovations to cost less than expected

Marney Simon
Staff writer

After months of brainstorming and working on plans, the Braidwood police station is ready for its overhaul. As the plans for renovations continue to get tweaked, the council approved another change order, this time, reducing the price of the contract by thousands of dollars.

On Sept. 26, the council approved a reduction in the cost of the project after finding small places throughout the contract where the budget could be trimmed.

“This is down $31,000 from the original contract price,” Public Health and Safety Commissioner Eric Tessler said. “Basically, what this is, in layman’s terms, we cut some fluff off of it.”

The city has a contract with Carlile Architects to design the renovation, and Heritage Development Corporation is the contractor on the job. Both firms are located in Kankakee.

In September, the council approved a total project cost of the renovation for the contractor in the amount of $136,000. However, Tessler noted that after going through the contract line by line, savings were able to be found.

“All of the commissioners got a list of 10 items, they’re going to be changed to this plan,” Tessler said. “[For example], change the 2-by-6 roof framing to 2-by-12 at 24 inches on center. You lessen the roof member, so in theory, you save money. So, we did things like that, tweaking them a little bit, so hopefully this will be the last change order we have, for less money.”

The changes reflect a new design for the project meant to keep the overall plan in place but reduce costs.

Items changed include:

• Eliminate the suspended ceiling and install gypsum ceiling to the bottom of the ceiling joists.

• Eliminate the sound absorption panels from the scope of the project.

• Eliminate painting from the scope of the project, painting will instead be done by city workers.

• Eliminate plumbing from the scope of the project. Plumbing will instead be performed by the city prior to the start of construction.

• Remove the temporary construction fence.

• Remove saw cutting of existing slab. Thickened slabs to support block walls will instead be installed on top of the existing slab.

The plans to renovate the police station were first discussed by council in February, after the city identified operational deficiencies related to the police station's current configuration.

City officials said the existing station does not adequately serve the functional and operational needs of the city. Specifically, the city has identified deficiencies related to a building space, interrogation space, and interview rooms.

The renovation plans include creation of three interview rooms in the existing sally port.

The additional space will also be utilized to help with the CHANGE program, which allows the department to connect addicts seeking recovery with the help they need.