September 11, 2017

CT Construction Digest Monday September 11, 2017

                              TO RELEASE A LANDMARK REPORT

TIME:              11:00am  (Please plan to arrive early)
DATE:             Tuesday, September 12, 2017
PLACE:           Union Station, on the Bus Platform Spruce Street, Hartford 

I hope that you can join us as Alison Premo Black Ph.D, Chief Economist of the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, releases this comprehensive economic analysis that shows how failing to invest in Connecticut transportation systems will impact the top economic industry sectors in the state over the next 20 years. 
As always, strong support and attendance is needed to show the importance of this critical issue for the state.  Please bring as many people from your organization as possible.  This may be the last opportunity to make the case for transportation investments before the legislature considers the House Democrats budget that guts transportation funding!

Wallingford Sewer Division seeking $600,000 budget amendment for wastewater treatment plant analysis

WALLINGFORD — The Town Council on Tuesday will consider spending an additional $600,000 for a study to evaluate the town’s wastewater treatment plant.
In December 2015, the Sewer Division budgeted $500,000 in its 2016-17 capital budget for the wastewater facility plan. That amount would be augmented by the $600,000 budget amendment the council will consider.
The Sewer Division is preparing the facility plan for “anticipated changes in the permitted phosphorus discharge” allowed by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, according to a memo written by Neil Amwake, general manager of the Water and Sewer Divisions.
The plan has two phases. The first includes studies of three phosphorus treatment technologies, according to Amwake’s memo. The second involves a comprehensive evaluation of the existing wastewater treatment facility, including structures, equipment and processes.
“The town’s wastewater treatment plan has been in continuous operation for more than 28 years with no comprehensive study undertaken in that time period to thoroughly review, assess and evaluate the equipment or processes,” Amwake said in the memo, which was sent last month to Public Utilities Director Richard Hendershot. Reached by phone, Amwake declined to elaborate.
“There are aspects and parts of the plant that really need to be repaired and replaced as anyone would expect after that length of time,” Mayor William W. Dickinson Jr. said last week.
The total cost of the facility plan is estimated at $1.1 million. Amwake explained in his memo that the town is eligible to receive a state grant for 55 percent of the cost, about $605,000, once construction begins.
“With a 55 percent reimbursement grant, the town will be eligible to receive reimbursement of $605,000 once construction is initiated, resulting in a net cost to prepare the facility plan of approximately $495,000; an amount nearly equal with the original budget appropriation,” the memo said.
The Public Utilities Commission voted last week to approve the additional $600,000.
The levels of phosphorus discharge from the wastewater facility are regulated by a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued by DEEP, the memo said. It is anticipated that DEEP will issue a draft renewal permit in April 2018 with lower levels of permitted phosphorus discharge. CLICK TITLE TO CONTINUE
Norwich — The owner of the nearly 50-acre portion of the former Norwich Hospital in Norwich now owes the city more than $81,000 in back property taxes dating to July 2016, city officials said, and the property could be slated for a tax sale auction early next year if the taxes are not paid.
Norwich officials said they do not want the city to foreclose and take ownership of the three large parcels that still have more than two dozen decaying former institutional buildings and residential houses once used by doctors at Norwich Hospital.
Instead, Tax Collector Carlene Deal said, if the taxes remain unpaid, the parcels will be added to a list she is compiling of properties to be sold at tax auction in early 2018. The starting bid would be the taxes owed — expected to exceed $100,000 by January — with any higher amounts applied to other liens on the property and the remainder going to the state.
Thames River Landing LLC, headed by developer Mark Fields, owes $81,897, including September interest on the back taxes owed. Legal fees thus far would add another $350 to the total, Deal said.
Fields said Friday he was aware of the back taxes owed, but said he did not receive the warning letter attorney Aimee Wickless said was sent to Fields in August. He said he plans to pay the back taxes and is moving forward with plans to develop the Norwich property with hospitality projects and a luxury apartment complex.
“These things don't happen overnight,” Fields said. “It's a long, complicated process.”
Thames River Landing purchased the Norwich portion of the former hospital property from the state in October 2015 for a combined total of $300,000 for the three separate parcels on both sides of Route 12.
The buyer was left responsible for cleaning up the buildings abandoned by the state, and most remain decaying, with overgrown brush and trees enveloping some of the structures. Fields has renovated one house at 626 Laurel Hill Ave. as his residence, according to city tax records.
A parcel with an address of Laurel Hill Road with no street number contains four institutional buildings and 17 former hospital staff residences.
The entrance road to the abandoned subdivision is blocked off at the Route 12 intersection. The third parcel on the Thames River side of Route 12 is listed as 705 Laurel Hill Ave. and contains five institutional buildings, most obscured from view from the street by vines, brush and trees.
While Grasso Tech has about 485 students now, the new school will be built for a capacity of 800, and Feeney is hoping for an initial increase of about 100 students.
The new building is expected to be open for students in the fall of 2019. It will feature the combination of the hospitality and culinary programs — with a restaurant — and a new welding program, to help meet the needs of Electric Boat and other area manufacturers.
Grasso Tech has refurbished an old welding shop for use by Electric Boat and Three Rivers Community College in the evenings, but there is no welding program for students. CLICK TITLE TO CONTINUE

Construction of new school underway at Grasso Tech

Groton — When Ella T. Grasso Technical High School students returned for classes, they were met with a sprawling expanse of fenced-off construction.
But Principal Patricia Feeney said with a laugh that with a lot of planning, the transition has "been really smooth."
She met over the summer with construction manager O&G Industries to plan new bus routes, parent drop-off/pick-up and restructured parking.
"We're trying to make sure everybody's safe," Feeney said.
In June, shortly after school let out, O&G Industries began construction of a new 220,000-square-foot school. The roughly $135 million facility, which includes $98.3 million in construction, is state-funded through bonds.
O&G Industries was hard at work over the summer preparing the ground for construction.
"They had to come in and literally tear up trees and actually dig to get to the level that the school's going to be, take out boulders and then relocate gas lines," Feeney said. Crews also had to restructure fiber optics and electric lines.
With a 62-acre property, Grasso Tech is keeping its existing facility open while constructing the new building on-site. The construction site previously contained the driveway leading to the school, grassy areas and wooded areas, Feeney said.
She noted that the project to replace the current school, built in 1977, was approved in 2004 but was halted several times.
"The condition of our building right now is deteriorating rapidly," Feeney said. It has suffered issues with ventilation and HVAC.

Friday September 8, 2017

City releases increased hiring of minorities, women, residents on school construction projects

Huge construction cranes loom over Miami as Irma threatens

Amazon wants to open a $5 billion second HQ in North America

Temporary repairs to Pawcatuck bridge could begin this fall

Future New London magnet schools undergo new changes

Stonington approves another $88,000 to fix Bayview Avenue drainage problem

What’s delaying the demolition of the Mills apartments in Meriden?

East Hampton’s renovated $51.7 million high school to be dedicated Friday

Thursday September 7, 2017
Wednesday September 6, 2017
Tuesday September 5, 2017
Friday August 31, 2017
Wednesday August 30, 2017