Contractor files protest against Wheeling parking offer | News, Sports, Jobs

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Photo by Joselyn King Wheeling Mayor Glenn Elliott, left, and Vice Mayor Chad Thalman, left, sit at Tuesday’s emergency city council meeting to hear the first reading of an ordinance authorizing the manager Robert Herron to spend $12.3 million to build a parking lot at the corner of downtown 11th and Market streets.

WHEELING – A contractor bidding to work on the Wheeling’s Market Street car park project is officially protesting an inferior proposal submitted by a competitor.

Wheeling City Council met Tuesday for a short emergency meeting to hear the first reading of an ordinance authorizing City Manager Robert Herron to spend $12.3 million to build a parking lot at the corner of 11th and Market in the city center.

The proposal from Carl Walker Construction of Pittsburgh was the lowest among four bidders. Other bids included a $15,284,000 bid from CPS Construction Group of Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania; a $16,730,000 bid from Thomarios, a contractor with offices in Pittsburgh; and a $17,173,000 bid from Colaianni Construction of Dillonvale.

Representatives from CPS Construction appeared before council members on Tuesday to say they believed Carl Walker Construction’s bid was “non-compliant” and that they had failed to provide the required price for a foundation system on auger piles specified in the offer. This makes the offer “incomplete”.

Further, Carl Walker Construction did not provide any other option for the city to consider and approve, and “substituted its alternative approach to the required prices forming the basis of the design”, and the company’s cost proposal is “unbalanced because the manifest inequity of its price appears to be incorrectly based on a pre-engineered superstructure, as opposed to the cast-in-place post-tension superstructure demanded by the tender.

John J. Fratto, President and CEO of CPS Construction Group, and Councilor John Tobin presented the arguments. A written protest detailing their concerns was delivered to city officials on Monday.

City manager Robert Herron said architect Victor Greco and his team at Mills Group reviewed the lowest bid submitted by Carl Walker Construction and found it to be within specification.

They called it a “good offer” and believe the city can go through the process of awarding the job to the company, he said.

Carl Walker Construction has experience building parking garages in the area and has built two in Morgantown, according to Herron.

“They’re a very reputable contractor, and we’re very confident they can complete the job as a bid,” he said.

There was a formal bidding process, Herron said.

“We had specifications. We had addenda all compiled by our qualified architect and engineer. We had a public opening of sealed bids,” he said. “The architect reviewed the seemingly lowest bidder and found them to be compliant with this process.

“Based on what I know today and what happened with the contractor review and the takeover of this particular contract, I think we can move forward.”

The council called the emergency meeting on Tuesday for the first reading of the ordinance so that a vote on the offers could be allocated within the next month. Bids are locked for 30 days and costs in today’s construction market are expected to continue to rise in the new year.

Council member Rosemary Ketchum was not present at Tuesday’s emergency meeting.

Wheeling City Council is due for a second reading of the ordinance awarding the bid to Carl Walker Construction at its next regular meeting scheduled for Dec. 7. A council vote on whether or not to award the bid would take place after the ordinance is read. in front of them a third time.



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