Library's Expansion  | Newspaper Articles

Library project start nears - Leominster to seek bids
Matthew Bruun, Worcester Telegram & Gazette, April 7, 2005

LEOMINSTER - Ground may be broken in June for the long-awaited expansion and renovation of the public library, Library Director Susan T. Shelton said yesterday.

"We're on our way," she said.The city will advertise for construction bids on the library project next week, Purchasing Agent Gregory C. Chapdelaine said.

The projected cost is $10.8 million, with all but about $2 million going for construction itself. The remainder of the bill would cover furnishings, telecommunications wiring and the cost of a temporary place for the library collection during an estimated 16 months of construction.

The start of the project was delayed by several factors, including an independent engineering firm's review of construction documents and the search for the library's temporary quarters.

Mr. Chapdelaine said the late bid date could be a factor in the number of bids that are returned for the project. Some firms that may have been interested in the library project may have already filled their schedule with other jobs, he explained.

"It all comes down to, how competitive are the bids?" he said yesterday. "That's what's really going to drive the project."

He said he expects widespread interest in construction documents from prospective contractors, because of the scope and longevity of the

job. Bids for the general contract are due June 2, but sub-bids on trades such as masonry, metal fabrication, plumbing and painting are due May 17.

A pre-bid conference for prospective bidders is scheduled for April 22 at the library.

The library comprises about 20,000 square feet, and it will more than double in size to 44,513 square feet with the project. The library addition built in 1966 will be torn down, and 35,000 square feet of the revamped library will be new construction.

About $3 million of the project will be covered by a state grant the city received in 2002. The City Council approved the bonding of the remaining money in August 2003.

Ms. Shelton said yesterday no lease had been signed for the temporary library site. Library officials visited a short list of potential sites for the temporary locale, including the Crossroads Office Park off Mechanic Street.

The city invested more than $1 million at Crossroads several years ago in anticipation of opening a temporary middle school at the site. The plans were ultimately scuttled after concerns were raised about the safety of the location, near the city's capped landfill.

Extensive environmental testing showed no problems at the site, and the landfill itself is being eyed as the site of a minor league baseball stadium.



Project Overview
Plans and Drawings
Temporary Library

Construction Update
Building Committee
Newspaper Articles