Homestead construction projects continue gaining momentum as the city council approved a construction manager at risk to finish designing and building a new police station.
Munilla Construction Management, the same company building the new City Hall in Homestead’s historic downtown, won the bid over six other firms vying for the contract.
Unlike a general contractor, the construction manager at risk comes in early in the design phase of a project and coordinates with the architect to evaluate and possibly alter the design and materials to improve feasibility and cost of construction.
The city opted for a construction manager at risk to expedite the timeline, and also put a financial cap on the project.
“In this case, were have a design and a pot of money,” Mayor Jeff Porter said.
In January, the city approved a conceptual drawing from architecture firm, Rodriguez and Quiroga Architects Chartered, who will work alongside MCM to complete design and proposed cost for the project by mid-April.
MCM must ensure the city that the total cost of the facility will be within or below the guaranteed maximum price of $13. 5 million.
“If all goes well, we don’t come back to you and we’ll see you at the groundbreaking,” City Manager George Gretsas told the council members.
The city hopes to break ground sometime in May, about a year after residents approved a bond referendum to increase property taxes to raise $18 million for the new station and $3 million to set up a temporary police station in the sports complex, which is located a few miles east of where the new police station will be built.
At first, MCM was ranked second, with 82.88, while Turner Construction Company ranked an 88. The other company scores ranged from 63.88 to 70.86.
The two top firms then presented to the selection committee on Feb. 12, when MCM came out on top, ranking 440 and Turner, 435.
A couple of weeks ago, city officials celebrated the topping-off of the new City Hall building, when MCM announced that construction was 60 days ahead of schedule.
In its proposal to the city, MCM emphasized it will hire local workers and local sub-contractors and predict that in about 14 months, it can turn the vacant parcel of about 4.85 acres into a three-story building, which will be double the size of the current police station, with about 55,000 square feet.
The new police station will be just a block away from the old building, behind Losner Park in the city’s historic downtown.