New year to bring new phase of Andrews Park improvements

Champlin will continue forward with phase 2 of the Andrews Park improvement project. At their Dec. 10 meeting, the council approved the final plans and specifications for the second phase and ordered advertisement for bids.

Parks Facilities Manager Dan Masloski reported to the council that phase one is nearly complete and bids will be solicited for phase two in January. The bid process will be closed Jan. 30 with the council reviewing bids at their Feb. 11 work session with a final look expected at the Feb. 25 council meeting. Masloski’s expectation is to begin work on phase 2 in August 2013, leaving the park available for summer programming and use.

Phase one consisted of upgrading the Andrews Park parking lot along with a large portion of the underground infrastructure updates that were completed as part of the 2012 street reclaim project at a cost of $296,259.

Masloski said at the meeting that the parking lot is substantially complete and lights were to be going up last week.

The current estimate to complete phase 2 is $1.673 million.

The city moved towards the phasing process for Andrews Park when the bids for the project came back last June with the lowest one at $3.1 million, well over the city’s $2.175 million projected cost. Masloski said that’s when the council suggested they find some other creative ways to bid and fund the project.

“We analyzed the bid which was very complex and worked to find ways to make the project easier to bid,” said Masloski. “We saved a substantial amount of money by making the bid less complex.”

That’s when the new phasing approach came into play. Additionally, the city has garnered $240,000 in grant money from the Hennepin County Youth Sports Grant ($220,000) and the Twins Community Grant ($20,000).

During the analysis process the city realized they would need to adjust the project’s projected cost overall.

“We looked at ways to reduce the number to put it in a more reasonable range,” said Masloski. “But we knew we’d have to increase some budget line items at the same time.”

The scope changes for the remainder of the project, which includes phase two and three include:

• Eliminate the picnic shelter screen wall.

• Eliminate skylights in programming building and picnic shelter.

• Provide open air structural wood components to the programming building and picnic shelter.

• Make mechanical changes to the splash pad design.

• Vacate architectural designed building spectator shelter instead, purchasing and installing a prefabricated one at a reduced rate.

• Change dugout design options.

Phase two will include the splash pad, programming area, entry features, picnic shelter, landscaping and some electrical and lighting work. A tentative grand opening date for phase two is set for Memorial Day 2013.

“The city and the council very much support the framework of this project which has been kept in tact,” said Masloski. “The community is very excited about it too.”

Masloski expects the park’s third phase to undergo a similar timetable a year later with bids accepted in January 2014 and construction on phase three elements beginning in August 2014.

Phase three will include the picnic shelter, duguouts, paving in and around softball/baseball whell, drainage, concession stand with expansion of bathroom facilities.