By Clint Brown
The Pella City Council approved a resolution regarding a pair of change orders during their regular meeting last week, both regarding the Pella Sports Park Project.
The approved resolution approves change Orders #1 and #2 with Civil Design Advantage (CDA) for the Pella Sports Park Project and increases the contract amount by $24,200 for additional professional services for the creation of a mitigation plan to obtain a Section 404 permit from the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). As background, included in the original scope of services were time and labor to investigate whether the drainage areas on the property were wetlands or Waters of the United States (WUS). Both of these waterway types are administered by the USACE.
The sub-consultant for CDA, Terracon, has been through the initial investigatory period and has determined that wetlands and WUS are present on the property and subject to the permitting requirements of the USACE. Therefore, a mitigation plan is required in order to obtain permitting through the USACE. Terracon has estimated their fees for the creation of this plan as well as the obtaining of the permit at $24,200.
The reason the project needs to acquire a Section 404 permit from the USACE is due to the placement of the storm water detention basin/irrigation pond for the project. The most advantageous place to place the pond is in the lowest point of the property in which wetlands and Waters of the United States are located. Since the pond needs to be a minimum of 1 acre in size, this will trigger an individual Section 404 Permit from the USACE as the disturbance of wetlands will exceed the threshold limit of .5 acres. CDA has analyzed locating the irrigation pond in different locations of the property and in summary, the additional cost of earthwork exceeds the estimated cost to obtain a Section 404 permit from the USACE. In addition, if the pond is located in another location that does not require wetland disturbance, then CDA believes the irrigation capacity of the pond will be greatly reduced which will lead to addition operating costs in irrigating the fields.
With this change order, the City will be responsible for 42% of the $24,200 cost or $10,164 with remaining funds being provided by Fields for Our Future, which is in accordance with the contractual agreement for funding construction of the complex.
The Section 404 permitting process could potentially result in delays in the bidding or initiating of construction for the project, as the permitting process is estimated to take between four and six months. As a result, staff gave permission for CDA to prepare the Wetland Delineation Report for $700 (Change Order #1) in order for the project to remain on course to seek construction bids early in the spring of 2013. This report was required to determine if there were additional drainage areas of the property that would be subject to requirements of wetlands and/or WUS. Preliminary feedback received by the staff of USACE indicated to CDA that two additional areas needed to be explored. Prior to receiving that feedback, CDA was not aware of these additional areas and their potential for consideration under the jurisdiction of the USACE because crops covered them when CDA submitted their engineering proposal to the City. Therefore, since this report needed to be completed and it could not have been foreseen as a need when engineering bids were sought for the project, staff authorized Change Order # 1 for $700.
The City of Pella will also be required to monitor the wetland area for a period of likely three to five years. The annual cost of performing the monitoring to satisfy the requirements of the Section 404 permit is between $2,000 and $4,000 and is in addition to this change order.