The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

July 30, 2013

Library Phase I completion targeted for end of November

— Exterior work on the new library being built in the former Kroger’s building could be completed by the end of November, according to project officials.

Project manager Kerrick Whisenant of Limestone Building Group, the library’s construction firm, said last week, “We hope to finish Phase I by the end of November; however, the impact of the site conditions we ran into is still unknown. We hope to make up this time.”

Previously, project officials said the new, 38,427-square foot library could be finished by June 2014. The first phase of the project includes exterior work, while the second and final phase will be interior remodeling and furnishing of the former grocery store on South Jefferson Street.

Library Foundation board member David Seibert, who also serves on the library construction committee, discussed some of the site conditions during the July 18 foundation board meeting at the Athens-Limestone Public Library.

Seibert said two change orders — one dealing with a brick tie and the other for a bar joist — have been issued for the first phase, which began construction June 5.

“The architect (Jeff Tosh of CMH Architects) had to take time from designing Phase II to make those change orders, and it might have delayed him a hair,” said Seibert.

Seibert, who said a $30,000 monument sign for the library has been removed from the project plans due to a lack of need, said the change orders would not cause additional expense to the first phase because “contingencies were built in,” and that “more than likely, (the cost) won’t go over the contingency.”

Seibert also pointed out that “taking down the building” would still have cost more than the work necessitated by the change orders.

“A new building would cost $180 per square foot, and that would mean paying $7,200,000 for that building,” he said.

Seibert said demolition has been completed, the new sprinkler system is also ready for testing and the roof “is in progress.”

He added the project’s first full construction report will be available for June and July by the end of this month, and that each following month, the project manager will release a report.

In other business, the foundation board agreed to add Doris Estes to the board to replace outgoing board member R.B. “Buzz” Estes, who could no longer participate due to a time conflict.

The foundation board will hold its regular monthly meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 15, at the library on 405 E. South St.

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