By Pat Maurer
The Clare City Commission approved Gourdie-Fraser and Associates of Traverse City as the firm for the design and construction engineering for the new Clare Industrial Park North.
The $2.6 million Economic Development grant awarded late last year required that the City “solicit” engineering firms with a Request for Qualifications (RFQ). Five firms responded to the City’s request; Gourdie-Fraser and Associates of Traverse City, Williams and Works of Grand Rapids, OHM of Mt. Pleasant and Lapham Associates of Clare. Two firms were chosen for interviews by the selection committee, Gourdie-Fraser and Associates and Williams and Works. Following the interviews, GFA was recommended by the selection committee to develop design and bid specifications for the new industrial park.
City Manager Ken Hibl said GFA was selected because “They have been with us on this project for eight or nine years and have the needed background.” He said “They are familiar with the city’s infrastructure and will be able to complete the work in time to begin construction this spring. The other firms would not be able to complete the work to allow construction to begin until the spring of 2016.”
Consumers Energy has committed to building a new $4 million service facility in the park this year. Hibl
said he expects they will submit a site plan and begin construction this spring. “It is imperative that we select the engineering firm as soon as possible,” he said. “We need to have the basic infrastructure in place in the new park by then to allow them to meet their present schedule.” Consumers has a target date to occupy the building in the spring of 2015.
In another matter Hibl told the board he recommended Williams and Works of Grand Rapids as the consultant for the Hatton Township Landfill. The recommendation was made because the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality directed that the City hire a professional consultant to assist in confirming the size and migration directions of the various contaminant plumes emanating from the landfill; create a map accurately depicting the location of all the current monitoring wells; determine the locations where new monitoring wells should be drilled to track the progress of the plumes and to develop a long-range monitoring plan. “It would make sense if we used Williams & Works for this task as they are very familiar with our landfill,” Hibl said. “They were selected at the City’s consultant for the landfill approximately 20 years ago and completed all of the initial work regarding the cap for the landfill, locating monitoring wells, etc.” Hibl said the City’s environmental attorney Matt Zimmerman of Varnum Law of Grand Rapids had recommended the “sole source proposal” from the firm. Hibl said that if the proposal cost is considered unreasonable, “We still have time to solicit REQs, select a consultant, and obtain a proposal of cost for the work.”
Other business at the Clare City meeting Monday included:
*In his City Manager’s Report, Hibl told the Commission that Dani Montini had been elected as the new president of the Clare Chamber of Commerce. “I am excited about the Chamber’s plans for the community,” Hibl said. Other officers are Vice President Tammy Miller, Secretary Matt Miller, and Treasurer Cheryl Yesney.
*Hibl also told the board that Tom Quick had been promoted to Deputy Director for the Waste Water Treatment Plant and former part-time employee Ron Schmidt was promoted to full-time operator.
*The appointment of Commissioner Karla Swanson as a voting member of the Zoning Board of Appeals.
*The approval of bills totaling $69,718.60.