By ROBERT PIERCE
• Daily Leader
Construction work on the expansion project for Southwest Medical Center is scheduled to start Sept. 13.
The hospital’s board of trustees and the Seward County Commission met Tuesday with officials from the architectural firm Health Facilities Group and the construction manager on the project, Nabholz Construction.
After looking at some design drawings for the overhaul of the hospital, including the construction of a medical office building, David Wright of HFG took community leaders inside the project’s budget.
“We’ve been communicating all along to try to work towards developing a project budget,” he said. “We started out with a project budget that was developed before Nabholz came on.”
Those totals were added up in March and include:
o $15.8 million for construction;
o $1.1 million for architect and engineering;
o $4.45 million for furniture, fixtures and equipment;
o $200,000 for financing; and
o $373,000 for owners contingency.
Wright said equipment includes some medical equipment needs which are being funded through the bond issue.
“The current estimates based off the 55 percent design development drawings, the bottom line number stays at $21.94 (million),” he said. “We saw the construction go up by $75,000 over the original number that was given to them, but we found that fixtures, furniture and equipment has went down by $80,000.”
Wright said HFG has come with a list of alternates being proposed for bidding should climate dictate the availability of those items.
“If there’s contingency left later in the job, we could add some of these elements,” he said. “These elements all are items that were not envisioned to be part of the original scope of the project.”
Nabholz estimated the price of those alternates is $142,000.
Wright next showed members of both boards a tentative schedule that has been set for the SWMC upgrades.
“We felt there was some importance to take advantage of the current construction environment, where construction pricing has been held down because of the extreme competitiveness in the market right now,” he said. “We need to try to get this thing out of the ground this fall.”
Wright said HFG is developing phased bid packages to help facilitate having elements of the project ready for contractors to bid. He said this is necessary in order to allow contractors to start work on various elements at different points in time.
Wright said following the design phase, Nabholz will submit a proposal for a guaranteed maximum price for the project.
“We need to have some meetings after that to secure the hospital board’s approval and to secure the county board’s approval so Nabholz can start construction on Sept. 13,” he said.