Sunday, October 24, 2010

$6.7 million means .. $14 million, naturally

Whoops, someone didn't do very well in math. The Skydance Bridge, designed by Butzer SXL, was supposed to cost $3.3 million, which was great because the total amount the city was able to spend was $6.8 million. Then it went up to $5.22 million, eh..that's okay, but hope the city didn't count on the savings it looked like there might be on the project. And then the cost ballooned to $12.8 million and that is the most recent cost estimate.

Did construction costs increase 4 times in the last two years or did someone design it (in a design competition) with no intention of staying within the cost, just to win? Or is there some other reason that the project cost increased 4 times and why is nobody asking that question?

Not taking anything for granted--Butzer could have legitimately expected it to fall in budget. And probably did, he certainly seems like a straight-forward person of integrity, one of the better professors at OU.

But again, how does the cost for the bridge balloon 4 times as much?

Now where we are is that the project is being redesigned by Butzer SXL, who already won the contract, and the city is going to increase their contract pay due to the extra work they're having to do. The pedestrian bridge will be a simple trussed bridge (similar to the railroad bridge beside the I-44 bridge over the Canadian River) and will have a "bird" design. Like Tweety cartoons and stuff on it? I dunno.

It will be redesigned to stay within the $6.8 million construction allowance. I will post my thoughts and criticisms of this deal later, but that's the version of what happened without my commentary. I am curious to see what other people think and have some questions answered first.


Anonymous said...

Find a way to build it.

Anonymous said...

It is my understanding that the original budget was to be 12.6 million, after Butzer had proposed a design for that budget and won the bid, they then cut the budget in half, to 6.7 million.