Detroit Lakes City Council approves $9.95 million bid for new public works building

The City Council approved the lowest bid of $9.95 million for construction of the new public works building on Tower Road during a meeting of the council on Feb. 14.

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Graphic rendering of the new Detroit Lakes Public Works building on Tower Road.
Screenshot / Oertel Architects website

DETROIT LAKES — Members of the Detroit Lakes City Council unanimously approved a $9.95 million construction bid for the new Public Works building on Tuesday, Feb. 14.

Construction of the new facility will begin in 2023. The facility will be located next to the new Becker County Highway Department building in the North Tower Road industrial park .

BCI Construction Inc., of Sauk Rapids, Minn., was selected by the council for the project after submitting the lowest bid among 12 different bidders, whose bids ranged from $9.95 million to about $12 million in hard construction costs.

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Deb Brandwick, a principal architect at Oertel Architects, discusses the bids for the new public works building during a meeting of the Detroit Lakes City Council at the Becker County Courthouse on Monday, Feb. 14, 2023.
Michael Achterling / Detroit Lakes Tribune

In a project memo to the council, Deb Brandwick, project manager and principal architect for Oretel Architects, stated BCI's bid was 5% lower than the next closest bidder and included an addition to the initial design, which will provide more enclosed, heated garage space for city vehicles.

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She also said the project is expected to cost $11.4 million once the soft costs — design fees, soils report, special inspections, furniture, a portable generator and building utility equipment — are factored into the final project cost total.


"The building does have a switch, a connection point, for a future generator," Brandwick added.

The 48,000-square-foot building will have 23 indoor parking spots for the city's fleet of vehicles and will also include a maintenance garage area, vehicle washing station and offices for city employees.

The city will use a portion of funds collected in recent years from the property tax levy to finance the project.

Jon Pratt, city engineer for Detroit Lakes, said the construction bid for the public works building came in underneath their most recent project estimate, which is good news and could be a stabilizing sign for the rising construction costs seen in recent months.

Lead Multimedia Reporter for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and the Perham Focus.
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