Kettering costs for police headquarters renovation rise $550K, draw questions

Kettering will spend $550,000 more for the multi-million-dollar renovation of its police headquarters, citing unexpected costs due - in part - to “building deficiencies,” records show. FILE

Credit: FILE

Credit: FILE

KETTERING – The city will spend $550,000 more for the multi-million-dollar renovation of its police headquarters, citing unexpected costs due — in part — to “building deficiencies,” records show.

The plan to spend those funds, which city records show increases the project’s cost to $8.96 million, was questioned by one resident who said Kettering City Council should more closely scrutinize the costs.

Kettering City Manager Mark Schwieterman said the project has encountered plumbing and electrical issues, as well as “major items” that changed construction plans.

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An Aug. 17 memo from Public Service Director Dave Duritsch to Schwieterman states “as with all renovation projects, we have encountered some unforeseen conditions, related to both the construction proper, as well as other building deficiencies outside of the construction scope that needed to be addressed at this time.”

The police department portion of the Kettering Government Center on Shroyer Road was built in 1973, historical records show.

The “additional funds related to furniture, fixtures and equipment, as well as the actual renovation or construction,” Schwieterman told council last week. “During the construction Phase I, we encountered additional existing conditions that needed to be remedied” for the two-phase project.

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Kettering City Council voted 5-0 Tuesday night for the $550,000 in supplemental appropriations in an approval that came without questioning Schwieterman’s explanation. That money will come from the city’s reserve fund, officials said.

The city “made the decision to spend additional dollars to make those necessary repairs for the renovation,” Schwieterman told council. “We also had items related to furniture, fixtures and equipment – a couple of major items being the decision to go ahead and reconstruct and remodel the detective section as opposed to utilizing the pre-existing facility.”

However, resident Sterling Abernathy told council members he thought they should ask more questions as to why the additional money was needed or if there were any other options.

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Council members are “the ultimate decision makers on this project,” Abernathy said. “Citizens expect our elected officials to be good stewards of taxpayer money. Good stewards are active. They get informed and ask questions about spending decision they approve.”

Earlier this year, the city approved issuing bonds to finance the project in what Assistant City Manager Steve Bergstresser said would be a 20-year note.

The renovation to the existing police facility will add an additional floor for office space for the chief, captains and administrative staff, city officials have said. It will also modernize that facility with new HVAC and mechanical equipment.

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The additional work from the funds approved last week, Schwieterman said, should not impact the time frame for the project’s completion, which is estimated at July 1, 2021.

A projected move-in date for the second-floor addition is Oct. 1 while a partial move-in date for operations is Jan. 1, 2021, city records show.

KPD CONSTRUCTION COSTS

•Construction: $7,636,867

•FF&E: $779,000

•Supplemental costs, $550,000

Total: $8,965,867

SOURCE: City of Kettering

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