The Oak Ridge City Council on Monday will consider a $72,000 contract for a new Peace Bell Pavilion at Alvin K. Bissell Park.
The contract with Demian Wilbur Architects of Washington, D.C., would be for construction documents, bidding administration, and construction administration. Funding would be provided by the Capital Improvements Program.
In a memo to Oak Ridge City Manager Mark Watson, Recreation and Parks Director Jon Hetrick said $25,000 was allocated for the project in fiscal year 2016, and another $50,000 was allocated in fiscal year 2017. So far, $15,000 has been used for conceptual planning by Demian Wilbur Architects, Hetrick said. The rest of the money for the contract will be allocated in the fiscal year 2018 Capital Projects Fund.
Here’s the background on the project to build the new Peace Bell Pavilion as reported by Hetrick:
In April 2014, the city received an inspection report from Tetra Tech Inc. to the structure housing the International Friendship Bell in A.K. Bissell Park. Inspection by city staff had previously found decay in the wooden structure that prompted the city to use Tetra Tech for a complete engineering analysis. The analysis found that most of the structure had experienced significant decay since its construction in 1996.
At the request of Watson, the Oak Ridge Recreation and Parks Advisory Board developed short- and long-term recommendations for the bell structure. It recommended removal of the structure to protect the public and the bell itself as a short-term solution. In addition, the Board recommended that the city move forward with long-term plans for a new Peace Bell Pavilion.
The Parks Board then created a Peace Bell Rebuild Committee charged with developing design of the new pavilion and a fundraising program. The Committee engaged architect Ziad Demian of Demian Wilbur Architects to develop concept plans.
After analysis of two design options and several revisions of the selected design, the Committee is ready to move forward with development of construction and bidding documents, and construction administration.
Fundraising is under way, and the Committee currently has commitments of approximately $600,000 for the project, including the capital commitment from the city.
The project is estimated to have a construction cost of approximately $750,000.
The City Council meeting on Monday starts at 7 p.m. in the Oak Ridge Municipal Building Courtroom. See the agenda here.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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