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Massena Town Council accepts bids for facade, parking lot work

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MASSENA — The Town Council awarded contracts last week for facade and parking lot improvements at the Massena Town Hall, but it opted not to accept bids for highway garage rehabilitation or security upgrades.

Councilmen awarded the Town Hall facade work to Continental Construction for $168,428, which includes a bid price of $153,116 and $15,312 — an additional 10 percent — to cover contingency expenses related to the project such as administration and inspections.

They also awarded the contract for a parking lot improvement project to Barrett Paving for $124,761, which includes a bid price of $102,510, $10,251 to cover contingency expenses and $12,000 to cover any overruns.

Altogether, the council agreed to bond for $1.6 million for the work. That includes money to cover the possibility of purchasing a manufactured building for the Highway Department and having some work done in-house.

If it had awarded a contract for the highway garage along with the remainder of the projects, the cost would have been pushed to $2.3 million, which included the 10 percent contingency fund. The low bid for the highway garage was $1.3 million.

Councilmen Albert N. Nicola wondered about the priority of the projects based on earlier discussions.

“At the time when we prioritized them, we did not realize the parking lot belonged to us,” he said. “How pressing is it to do the parking lot?”

Highway Superintendent Frank J. Diagostino said it was necessary to have it done now because of drainage issues that have water building up in a corner of the parking lot.

“There’s no place for the water to go,” he said, noting crews would have to dig up the entire parking lot and install drainage to resolve the issue.

Councilmen agreed that facade work was necessary at the Town Hall.

“We have to do the facade right away,” Mr. Nicola said.

“That corner of the building is starting to heave. We have structural problems because of the water,” Councilman Charles A. Raiti said, noting the parking lot and facade were the most important projects to address. “Those are the two I think we need to go forward with.”

Town officials previously had shared their concerns about the infrastructure. They said mortar was failing at the Town Hall and chunks of it were falling off the building.

The parking lot around the hall also needed to be addressed to repair potholes and fix drainage issues, they said.

While those projects move forward, work on the highway garage and security upgrade will continue to be studied before a decision is made, although Mr. Diagostino said he believed that with a manufactured building, Highway Department members could do some of the garage replacement in-house during their slow times in the spring and fall.

“It’s something we could pick away at,” he said.

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