With final blessings from aldermen and construction bids in place, Fairview Heights city leaders plan to break ground Saturday morning on the planned recreation center at Bunkum Road just north of Interstate 64.
The city approved bids early this month for the $16 million construction project, which is expected to be completed in early 2019. Construction was initially expected to cost more than $17 million, said Mayor Mark Kupsky.
“We were really pleased bids came in under the projected cost,” Kupsky said.
Demolition and excavation have already begun on the project, which will be paid for over 30 years through the city’s 1 percent food and beverage tax. The tax brings in about $1.5 million annually.
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Excavators hope to take advantage of mild weather so the building’s foundation can be laid before the holiday season, Kupsky said.
“Now reality really sets in,” Kupsky said. “We’ve talked about it, you see it on paper, go through the process, and you do all the bids, approvals, legislation, and then you’re out here actually see things taking shape ... Lo and behold here were are starting on a new center.”
Aldermen approved a total of 24 bids, from electrical services to locker installation. The costliest bids came in for concrete, electrical, HVAC and steel work. A full list of bids with a breakdown of costs can be found on the city’s website. Aldermen also approved the sale of $10 million in bonds to finance the initial stages of the project at their Oct. 11 meeting, the mayor said.
Holland Construction is serving as the project manager.
The public is invited to attend the ground-breaking ceremony on Saturday.
At a glance
Here’s what you need to know about Fairview Heights recreation complex ground-breaking ceremony:
- When: 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 28
- Where: 9950 Bunkum Rd. in Fairview Heights
- Details: City officials, construction managers and Pastor Jeffrey Williams of New Christian Fellowship Church will speak, followed by a ground-breaking ceremony. The public is invited to participate after the initial ground-breaking. Light refreshments will be served.