City Council updated on architect hiring process for Civic Campus

The Mountlake Terrace City Council received an update during its March 1 work/study session on the process for hiring an architect to design the Civic Campus Project that will includes a new city hall and police station expansion.

Assistant City Manager Stephen Clifton discussed staff’s work to finalize a contract with ARC Architects, following a selection progress that began with issuing a request for qualifications (RFQ) in December 2017.

Five firms submitted proposals, Clifton said, and the three finalists were interviewed Feb. 15. After reference checks were conducted on two of those firms, City Manager Scott Hugill recommended ARC Architects as the contractor.

“City staff are currently negotiating a fee proposal and contract, which is scheduled to be reviewed by council during a March 15 workshop,” Clifton said. The contract is tentatively scheduled for council approval on March 19.

The estimated project cost of $12.5 million includes both the cost of design and construction as well as the cost of issuing and selling the bonds for the 18,000-square-foot city hall that includes the council chambers, city offices, lobby and parking. The project also includes a police department expansion of approximately 3,100 square feet. The city has asked for separate project proposals for both a remodel of the current police station and development of a public gathering space at the corner of 232nd Street and 58th, and those proposals would be outside of the $12.5 million approved by voters. Clifton said.

Regarding community engagement, ARC Architects has proposed three public meetings, with the first taking place April 5, starting at 6 p.m. at the Mountlake Terrace Library.

The goal is to have a design complete and the project ready to bid by early 2019, followed by construction that would be completed by early to mid-2020, Clifton said.

The new building is needed so the city can stop renting office space to conduct City Hall business. The City of Mountlake Terrace has been renting space from Redstone Corporate Center, located at 6100 219th St. S.W., following a 2008 ceiling collapse in the old City Hall building, which made the building unsafe for employees. Rent costs the city about $40,000 per month

City Manager Hugill noted that the city’s lease for the Redstone Building goes through summer of 2019, and the city has talked with the building owners about the possibility of extending that lease until the new Civic Campus is completed.

City Councilmember Bryan Wahl said that he planned to vote against the ARC contract, stating he was disappointed that efforts haven’t been made to develop a public-private partnership to enhance the Civic Campus project. It had always been his hope, Wahl said, that such a partnership could bring back amenities that were lost when the council agreed to cut project costs to gain voter approval.

“I would have loved to have something like that too,” replied Mayor Pro Tem Kyoko Matsumoto Wright. “But we don’t have time. We have to be out of this building.”

Hugill said that to engage the private sector, staff would need to explore what the city would be willing to allow on Civic Campus property. However, there appeared to be no support from other councilmembers to follow up on that idea.

In other business, the council also heard a report from Public Works Director Eric LaFrance on a proposal to approve three contract supplements with consultant KPG for the city’s Main Street Revitalization Project.

Two of the three contracts — for $89,898.95 and $130,781.94 — will be reimbursed through the city’s agreement with Sound Transit, LaFrance said. The third contract, for $59,022.78, covers additional design work outside of the original project scope and will be covered by the city.

The council agreed to place those items on the council’s March 5 business meeting consent calendar for approval.

Also on the agenda for the March 5 meeting:

-Review of the Recreation & Parks Advisory Commission’s 2018 Work Program

-Review of the Arts Advisory Commission’s 2018 Work Program

The March 5 meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in interim Mountlake Terrace City Hall, 6100 219th St. SW, 2nd Floor. You can see the complete agenda here.

— By Teresa Wippel

  1. Public gathering space at 232nd and 52nd?? Really ? First I’ve heard of that. Maybe you meant 232nd and 58th.

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