Mount Prospect hopes to reduce fire station costs
As work on Mount Prospect's new fire station shifts from design to construction, the cost of building the headquarters at 111 E. Rand Road may be exceeding early estimates.
Although a final construction budget isn't expected until March, initial forecasts are putting the project about $433,000 over budget, according to Mark Rysavy, the village's deputy director of building and inspection services.
Rysavy said the numbers are a reflection of contractors being "safe" in the budget figures they are providing.
"We are over budget, but it's nothing that can't be handled," he added.
He suggested a series of cuts that would not affect operations to bring costs back within budget. They include reducing the number of sound control panels in the apparatus bay; reducing the radiant heat in the slabs both inside and outside the building; reducing the amount of ceramic wall tile in the bathrooms; relying on diesel rather than natural gas for its generator; and installing one monument sign, located at the Rand Road entrance, instead of two.
Trustee Paul Hoefert balked at a couple of the suggested cuts, including eliminating one of the signs.
"I have already tried to explain to people where the fire department is going to be," he said. "They don't get it, because that building is set back so far, nobody even knows it's there."
Trustee Richard Rogers, who is an architect, said changing the generator alone could result in substantial savings.
"I see some of this as the normal procedure, the normal way to operate under a construction budget," Rogers added. "I did this my entire life, making these kinds of compromises as you go."
Rysavy said the construction documents are expected to be complete by Feb. 19. Public bids are expected by March 12, with a final budget that month.
Construction is slated to start in April and finish by April 2020.