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On Friday, February 22, 2019, Mayor Richard J. Kos along with City & State Officials, and the City Hall Building Commissioners officially kicked off the Chicopee City Hall Exterior, Auditorium Rehabilitation and Accessibility Upgrades Project.
A construction contract was awarded to D.A. Sullivan & Sons, Inc. with a base bid of $11,061,000. Final cost estimates completed prior to the bidding process anticipated total project costs at $16 million. D.A. Sullivan and Sons, Inc. will begin construction activities on March 1st and continue for at least 18 months.
The City has also reviewed bid numbers for six (6) Add/Alternate scope items included in the bid documents at a total cost of $709,394.00. Upon review, the City has authorized all six (6) scope items to be included in the project.
At 148 years old, City Hall designed by Charles E. Parker, was constructed between 1870 and 1871. City Hall Annex was constructed between 1927 and 1929. The only significant rehabilitation project completed on the buildings occurred during 1977 and 1979 when the City advanced a rehabilitation project that focused mostly on office configurations, auditorium updates and internal finishes. Since 1980, no major rehabilitation projects beyond minor maintenance activities have been completed on either building. The historic auditorium was closed to the public circa 2003 following the failure and collapse of plaster finishes from the ceiling and upper walls of the space.
The Chicopee City Hall Exterior, Auditorium Rehabilitation and Accessibility Upgrades project is the culmination of nearly four (4) years of work on the City Hall Complex. The project was initiated in response to the failure of stone tracery and stained glass in the rose window that resulted in stone and glass collapsing to City Hall’s front stairs. In response, the City hired Dietz & Company Architects, Inc. of Springfield, MA to complete a structural analysis of the City Hall Complex. Dietz and Company completed a comprehensive structural analysis of the Complex which resulted in a Historic Structure Report (HSR) released on April 12, 2016. The HSR recommended emergency stabilization efforts for stained glass, brick and masonry throughout the structures. Stabilization measures were completed by the City during fall 2016. The City then authorized Dietz & Company to move forward with design and engineering for Phase I Rehabilitation efforts as recommended in the HSR. Prior to the beginning of design and engineering efforts, the City procured Owner’s Project Management (OPM) services to oversee the project. NV5 of Boston, MA was selected to assist the City in the advancement of this project and has been working with the Department of Planning & Development throughout the design process. The efforts resulted in the current Chicopee City Hall Exterior, Auditorium Rehabilitation and Accessibility Upgrades project.
The City will continue to research and develop grant proposals to programs which support historic rehabilitation projects similar in scope to the City Hall project. All grants secured by the City will reduce the total funding borrowed via the Bond Measure approved by the City Council. To date the following totals has been secured in support of the project as follows:
- $1,200,000 – City Council FY 2018 Appropriation;
- $1,000,000 – Charter/PEG Access Account (for technology components); and
- $367,160 – Green Community Designation Award.
The City will also be advancing the replacement of the City Hall Annex Elevator supported by a $250,000 grant from the Massachusetts Executive Office on Disability via the Municipal ADA Improvement Grant program.
Additionally, the City has submitted a grant request for $675,000 to the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund to support City Hall Auditorium rehabilitation scope.
The City will continue to advance additional grant proposals to other programs in support of the project. These programs may include:
- Green Community annual competitive grants;
- MA Executive Office on Disability grants; and
- CEL Efficiency Rebate program.
Lee Pouliot, AICP, ASLA – Director of Planning & Development has overseen the design & engineering process on behalf of the City.
“Chicopee City Hall is one of Chicopee’s treasures and a landmark of our downtown area. Congratulations to Mayor Kos and City Council for allocating of these funds as an investment to preserve our city’s history. I look forward to seeing the progress in the months to come,” said State Representative Joseph Wagner.
“With stained glass and plaster ceiling failure, and the recent need for stabilization measures to stabilize structural deficiencies, we are addressing the needs of a 148 year old building to serve our City and the public for years to come,” said Mayor Richard J. Kos.