Construction on Routt County’s new building on time, under budget so far |

Construction on Routt County’s new building on time, under budget so far

Material cost increases drove the building price tag to $14.1 million last year, but contingencies are holding for now

Routt County's new Health and Human Services building will get shipments of structural steel this week, which will help the building start to grow vertically.
Dylan Anderson/Steamboat Pilot & Today

With the first significant delivery of structural steel expected on site this week, work on Routt County’s new Health and Human Services building is still slated to be finished on time and under budget.

This week’s shipment of steel — which may be impacted by snow expected on Wednesday, March 9 — is the first of two this late winter and spring that will help the building start to take shape on the corner of Sixth and Oak streets in downtown Steamboat Springs.

“The intent was this week to get some steel on site and some of the basement lower level steel areas starting to be erected,” said Quentin Rockwell, a project manager for Centennial-based Wember Inc., which is serving as the county’s owner’s representative on the project.

“There is going to be a lot more steel happening over the next several weeks and into April when the bulk of the remainder of the building steel package arrives on site,” Rockwell said.

Right now, the foundations for the building are largely poured, giving a rough outline for the building. This week’s steel delivery will start to build upon that, forming some of the lower walls and allowing for some backfill around the foundation on the site.

County Maintenance Manager Steve Faulkner said deliveries this week shouldn’t require either Sixth or Oak streets to close, and, overall, the shipment shouldn’t have a significant affect on traffic.

By April, Rockwell said the project would start getting vertical, which should keep everything on schedule.

The competition date is slated for about a year from now, at the end of February or the beginning of March 2023.

“This time next year we’d be getting pretty heavily into the move-in phase, with the grand opening sometime probably April of next year,” Rockwell said. “That’s on track with the original schedule.”

The building’s cost estimates increased last year as materials costs soared, pushing the overall cost of the building to $14.1 million. But as of now, the building is about $600,000 under budget, Rockwell said, though there is still a lot of construction ahead.

In total, the project has a contingency of about $950,000, part of which is already built into the county’s contract with general contractor Calcon Constructors, which is based in Englewood.

Contingency covered in the contractor’s deal include potential add-on items that Routt County commissioner Tim Corrigan said the board still needed to make decisions on in the coming weeks. Some of these items include the audiovisual set up, blinds and ceilings for the planned community room.

The rest of this money is considered an owner’s contingency that is meant for unforeseen costs and is essentially the amount under budget the project currently is. Often these unforeseen costs are additional work that wasn’t initially anticipated, but it could also be used for material and labor cost increases.

“If the cost for a commodity or item has gone dramatically up, it might be that the owner’s contingency covers that cost increase,” Rockwell said.

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