Many times there are items on a City Council meeting agenda to approve bids for city projects. In almost every case, these projects have been programmed in a capital improvements plan and the money has been identified and earmarked.
But there are times when the bids are not approved and the project does not move forward.
This has been the case on the following three occasions this summer:
1. At our City Council meeting in June we rejected bids for the total reconstruction of the tennis and basketball courts at Franlo Park. Only one bid was received for this project. This $249,485 bid was nearly $100,000 over the estimated cost. We recommended that the bid be rejected and that we re-advertise the project in 2015.
2. This past Tuesday night we rejected a $194,395 bid for a landscaping project on Pioneer Trail between Flying Cloud Drive and Shetland Road. The sealed bids that were received were 32% over our estimate. We decided to reject this bid as well and re-advertise in 2015.
3. Also, on Tuesday we rejected a $420,300 bid for the steel erection that is a part of our aquatics expansion project at the Community Center. This amount was significantly more than was budgeted and our city staff and consultants felt this amount is too high and should not be paid. We then initiated other methods for securing contractors for this scope of work and received separate quotes for different types of work that were significantly lower.
In all three of these examples, we want to move forward with these important projects. We understand that economic activity is picking up throughout the metro area, and contractors of all types are getting busier and projects could be getting more expensive. However, we felt that the best course of action is to wait and plan for a more advantageous bidding environment in the future.
I feel that these actions exemplify a value we hold dearly in Eden Prairie city government- public stewardship. It is a city shared expectation and a value that we take very seriously. On a daily basis we have city employees that are making decisions to not purchase something at a certain time because it is simply not the best use of public dollars.