15 sealed bids to rebuild the Carnegie Arts Center were opened by the City of Turlock on Thursday.
The lowest bid by Applegate Johnston Inc. came in at $5.3 million, $2.5 million less than the architect’s construction estimate. The bad economy is believed to be the reason that even the highest bid was still under the estimated $6.2 million.
The City of Turlock has to check all the bids and make sure that they are all accurate.
The confirmed bids will go to City Council on July 14, 2009 for a vote.
The City Council identified $7.7 million to rebuild the Carnegie Arts Center in October of 2007. Private donations of $600,000 and $4.5 million in RDA funds were included.
At a May 5, 2009 Redevelopment Agency (RDA) Meeting, Council Members (who also serve as RDA Board Members) discussed reprioritizing projects to spend RDA funds on. Despite already spending $838,000 and Council previously identifying $7.7 million in funding, the project’s $4.5 million in RDA funding became jeopordized.
The Redevelopment Agency’s attempt to create a list of reprioritized projects was unsuccessful as some proposed projects did not even have concrete estimates. There is approximately $10 million available to spend on Redevelopment Area projects.
After RDA/Council Members made their lists of top 2 or 3 most desired projects to fund, the Carnegie Arts Center landed on the top of Mayor John Lazar’s and Councilwoman Mary Jackson’s lists. Councilwoman Amy Bublak’s top priority was a Youth Center, possibly included in the Carnegie project. The Carnegie project did not even make it on Vice Mayor Ted Howze’s and Councilman Kurt Spycher’s lists.
The May 5, 2009 RDA Meeting, and previous Council debates, have included discussion to not rebuild the Carnegie Arts Center. The focal point on whether or not to rebuild the Carnegie has been the fact that there is not a plan to fund the ongoing operational costs once the Carnegie is built.