Budget for new law enforcement facility in Steamboat goes up by $1M
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Elected officials in Steamboat Springs said they aren’t fretting a $1 million spike in the budget for the shared law enforcement facility being built by the city of Steamboat and Routt County.
About $250,000 of the budget increase stems from modifications that will have to be made to the building design to adhere to stricter energy-related building codes that go into effect at the start of next year.
Those added costs include such things as making the building a “smart” building with lights that run on timers and using triple-paned glass windows to make the building more energy-efficient.
The other $750,000 that’s been added into the budget is a contingency fund that will allow the city and county to add unexpected items into the project while things are under construction.
Such a contingency is referred to as an owner’s contingency.
“It isn’t a true cost,” City Councilwoman Kathi Meyer said Friday of the $750,000 contingency. “These would be for things we would want to add that we hadn’t thought of.”
Meyer did note the building materials have also recently gone up in price nationwide due to natural disasters such as the floods in Houston and wildfires in California.
Still, the leaders of the law enforcement facility project didn’t appear concerned by the budget increases this week.
“It may be as little as a $225,000 increase on a $17 million project,” Meyer said. “We’re moving forward.”
The cost of the facility is being shared by the city and the county.
City Manager Gary Suiter said the general contractor has informed the city the early estimates from subcontractors are “conservative” and the city will likely have some cushion baked into the current estimates.
He said the city will get firm bids on the project early next year.
The shared law enforcement facility is scheduled to be constructed next year adjacent to the Routt County Jail in west Steamboat.
City officials are also reporting that the county plans to move the emergency communications center into the building sooner than originally expected.
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As Steamboat Springs and Routt County ease out of the pandemic, I’m thrilled to see a full slate of community events on the calendar in the coming months.