The Regional District of Central Kootenay has hired Unitech Construction Management Ltd. to oversee project repairs to the the Nelson and District Community Complex aquatic centre.

Unitech chosen to manage Nelson aquatic centre renovations

The Regional District of Central Kootenay has hired Unitech Construction Management Ltd. to manage repairs to the aquatic centre.

The Regional District of Central Kootenay has selected Unitech Construction Management Ltd. as the construction management firm to repair the Nelson and District Complex.

The Delta firm was chosen from a shortlist of three companies and scored the highest in the evaluation process.

A complete project schedule won’t be known until Unitech meets with regional district staff and the design team to complete a review of the project.

According to Joe Chirico, the RDCK’s manager of community services, Unitech’s fixed price of $168,000 for managing the project was significantly lower than competing bids from Tango Management at $224,250 and Stuart Olson at $485,000. These figures are strictly management fees and do not include reimbursable expenses often incurred throughout projects, such as office rental.

Unitech has managed recreational projects such as Duncan’s Cowichan aquatic facility in 2008 and commercial projects such as the refurbishing of the Vancouver Convention Centre in 2010.

Jeff Phillips, the regional district’s project manager, will oversee the project and report to Chirico. Recreation manager Marty Benson will manage the impact of the pool closure on the public and employees.

The Nelson and District Recreation Commission approved the project team moving from a lump sum tender process to a construction management model at the beginning of May after all project bids in the first tender process came in well over budget. The new approach allows various components of the project to be divided into discrete sub-projects within an approved budget.

The pool will remain open for July and into August.

“We’re another crucial step closer to swimming in a better pool,” said Ramona Faust, chair of the Nelson and District Recreation Commission. “This step might well be the most important one in the project because it means we’ve hired an experienced and skilled group of construction managers who will refine the project and track and report on every dollar spent so the RDCK can deliver an affordable, improved facility to our community to enjoy for many years to come.”

The RDCK board approved a $4.92 million budget with borrowing not to exceed $4.5 million for all renovations, which will take about eight months to complete.

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