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posted: 12/19/2013 6:17 PM

Kane chairman pushes for study of court building's ventilation

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  • Inconsistent temperatures in the Kane County Judicial Center have prompted the county board chairman to call for a study of the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.

      Inconsistent temperatures in the Kane County Judicial Center have prompted the county board chairman to call for a study of the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system.
    BRIAN HILL | Staff Photographer

 
 

Depending on where you sit in the Kane County Judicial Center in St. Charles you may want a fan or a blanket, whether it is winter, spring, summer or fall.

Complaints about inconsistent temperatures throughout the three-story facility have continued, despite a $510,000 replacement of the controls for the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system the county board authorized in 2012.

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So county board Chairman Chris Lauzen, after meeting over the last two weeks with an ad hoc group of users, facilities supervisors, the firm that designed the building and the firm that installed the controls, has proposed hiring an engineering firm to find out what more needs to be done.

The committee agreed with his proposal to hire The Hill Group of Franklin Park, for up to $40,000, to figure out how to fix it. They also agreed with his suggestion that, to speed up the process, the resolution bypass the board's finance committee and go straight to the executive committee Jan. 8, because the finance committee won't meet again until mid-January due to the Christmas holiday.

If the executive committee agrees, the matter would be brought to the county board Jan. 14.

The committee Thursday also recommended the replacement of three of the building's original boilers. The other three were replaced last year.

"You may say, 'What's the hurry, Chris?' Because we are cooking and freezing people over there," Lauzen said.

"There really isn't a reason to have a kaleidoscope of temperatures going on in this building," said committee member Phil Lewis. He also said remodels of the building may have affected the system.

Committee members asked about how the engineering company could be hired without putting out a request for proposals. The firm was recommended by the building's architect, Lauzen said, and the company that installed the controls concurred. Governments don't have to seek bids for professional services such as engineering, and Kane County has used Hill before.

It would take up to two months to finish the study, and another week or two to compile and submit a report, Lauzen said.

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