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Council to review latest Carnegie bids

POSTED March 23, 2010 11:18 p.m.
Nearly nine months after the initial set of Carnegie Arts Center reconstruction bids were rejected by the Turlock City Council due to legal disputes, the second round of bids were made public this week.
EMJ Corporation of Sacramento is the apparent low bidder among the 10 bids received, coming in at $5.1 million. That’s less than the $5.3 million leading bid Modesto’s Applegate Johnston Inc. submitted in June, and far below the city’s initial $7.7 million estimate.
“So far it looks good,” said Turlock City Engineer Mike Pitcock.
“In this climate I do expect bid protests, but we’ll see if anything sticks.”
The Turlock City Council rejected the first wave of bids on Aug. 25, 2009, due to threatened litigation pertaining to the bids received. City staff received four complaints regarding the bid process, suggesting it was not completed in accordance with certain aspects of the labor code.
Bids ranged up to $5.9 million in this go-round, less than the $6.2 million high bid among the 15 first round submissions.
“We’re evaluating the bids and doing reference checks on the contractors,” Pitcock said. “If everything goes well we’re hoping to bring it before the council on April 13.”
The City of Turlock changed its bidding policy on Dec. 10, 2009, only allowing bid advertisements for projects whose design documents are 100 percent complete and whose building permit has been issued, in attempts to prevent future bid protests. The council also approved sending the Carnegie Arts Center reconstruction back out to bid that day.
The project will rebuild the existing Carnegie Library, which fell victim to arson in 2005, while adding a new building with additional gallery space and a multi-purpose room to host theatre, music, and banquets. When completed, the 18,360 square-foot building will host arts events almost every week of the year.
The Turlock City Council first approved the project in October 2007. At the time, construction projections saw the facility opening by the fall of 2009.
To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail acantatore@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2005.

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