Friday, December 09, 2005

Higher Than Expected Bids for Library

NCT link

Construction bids for the Encinitas library have come in up to 50 percent higher than a city estimate of $9.3 million.

Officials this week opened four bids, ranging from $14.1 million to $18.6 million, to build the library on Cornish Drive and bury nearby utility lines.

The city has programmed $13.6 million for construction.

Officials attribute the higher-than-expected bids to increased costs of construction and materials brought by global competition and domestic natural disasters.

As many of you know my wife is a budding architect. We were talking about the cost of projects like these. She says that since materials are so expensive the trick is to be clever and design "clean with no bling".

At her firm she took over a remodel project for some crappy strip mall out in the sticks. The project was way over budget so she cleaned up the previous design, removing all the goofy ornamentation and weird angles and corners that served no function and saved the client $100,000 in one day's work.

"You can't just haphazardly design a building without thinking about the labor it will take to build it. California worker's comp insurance drives construction cost up to $200 an hour. It's stupid to have your workers spending hours and hours building useless gimmicks that make the building ugly anyway."

That is the kind of mentality we need not only for the Encinitas public library but for the sick and twisted notion of spending $16 million on pedestrian crossing for the train tracks. My wife thinks we could have crossings every 1/4 mile for less than $5 million instead of just 4 crossings for $16. Aye caramba!


  1. Wow, we just saw this story, too. Yes, another perfect example of projections being off, our ending up eating it.

    Some say that in Europe, they would riot if a public property were demolished, and the new building, park, whatever the developer/city was, is now concocting, took so long to replace. At both the Hall property, and the Library site, demolition took no time at all to accomplish. And now what do we have?

    I had the pleasure of visiting the Ocean Beach Library, yesterday. A decent number of people were using it, smaller, and older, probably, than our original library. The computers were all being used.

    What we could have and should have done was just add on a computer lab to our previous library. We are not nearly as big as Carlsbad. We do not need to try to keep up with Carlsbad, library wise.

    Now we are missing a fine addition to our community, while costs for building a new one rise higher and higher. Demolition is kind of like bombing, then having to pay to redo, rebuild, in this case expand, what wasn't broken, before.

    Nobody is against books. Or railroad crossings. We were against wasting $55,000 on the train trestle over Encinitas Blvd, which has pigeon poo all over it again, btw. NCTD should have paid for that, thought it was unnecessary. Now Stocks is on that board. Heaven help us.

    JP, your wife should make a presentation to Council, re saving money on design of library, and Hall property. She could get "agendized," or perhaps have a closed session "consultation" which Council does all the time, behind closed doors, with private contractors. Unfortunately, those on Council and staff have very limited visions right now.

  2. Lawnmower Man Dalager, Ms. Bossy Pants Guerin. Car 54 where are you?

    More and more people are distrusting government officers, both national and local. Sure we want to have the holiday, holy days spirit, but it's not easy with the wolves breathing down our throat.

    We think today's editorial column by Bob Nanninga. "Onward Christmas soldiers," in Coast News, is great. Syndicated Columnist (where is this dude from?) Donald Lambro's piece, "Things in Iraq are better than they seem," is not.

    I was surprised Lambro called up Spiro Agnew, Nixon's VP, labeling those voices critical of war to be, "nattering nabobs of negativism." Incredible. Nixon finally got us out of Vietnam, but he resigned from office, in disgrace, unfortunately.

    I want to be optimistic, too. My hope is that we can get a change of consciousness going, the only true revolution.

    Most of the incumbents are awful. Particularly, locally. Although we do like our state senators, strong, gutsy women, we are grateful Bush is a lame duck. Unfortunately he can make many bad decisions, have many more failures in judgment, before our time with him in office is finally up. Is Rumsfield resigning? Wish Bush could have a true realization of god.

    Nixon caused Watergate. Here, will we have Hallgate? Library Gate? Just wondering.

  3. I like to score cheap books from the Book Trader on the corner of the coast hwy and e st.

  4. Yeah, but you can't research a term paper there. We need a modern library. We just need to design within our means. The important thing is the quality of the content in the library not how groovy it is.

  5. I don't want to get flamed for asking this question, but what's the problem with the functional, newer library located in Cardiff next to the post office and behind the Seaside Market? Is it just too small?


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