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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

New Altaville Cal Fire station two months behind schedule

Delays plague work on firehouse

The brand new $2.7 million Cal Fire station being built in Altaville is already almost two months behind schedule and costs are skyrocketing due to two major construction errors.

New sidewalk in front of the new Altaville Cal Fire Station 
Anyone driving through Angels Camp over the past few weeks has seen a lot of construction going on near the old Altaville Schoolhouse.

Much to many residents’ surprise, shortly after a new sidewalk was put in on either side of the entrance to the new station, it was promptly ripped up, leaving rebar and piles of shattered concrete everywhere.

Questioned about why the large project was ripped out, Michael Liang, assistant deputy director for the state Department of General Services, gave an explanation: “Originally the contractor did not install the sidewalk to specifications, so it didn’t drain properly. Caltrans notified DGS, so the contractor has to redo it.”

The construction superintendent overseeing the project said he had warned Hilbers, the construction company out of Yuba City sub-contracted to do the job, that they were not building the sidewalk to specifications, but they had not listened to him.

Once the job was complete, Caltrans inspected it and notified DGS it did not meet specs.
“Basically, they saw the water did not drain. It was draining onto the highway and pooling,” Liang said.

When asked exactly how much it would cost to redo the sidewalk, Liang said he didn’t know.
The construction superintendent said with weather delays, it could be up to a couple of weeks before the sidewalk is ready for use.

It’s not just the sidewalk that may have to be replaced.

According to the construction superintendent, George Reed laid asphalt on the driveway and parking lot of the new station that did not meet compaction specifications.

Liang confirmed this, adding that the DGS is still reviewing the parking lot. He said if it did not meet specifications for compaction, it would be removed and redone.

The construction superintendent said instead of redoing it, George Reed may do several “fog coats” and put the asphalt under warranty for a couple of years.

Errors made by Hilbers and Reed will cost in the neighborhood of $150,000 when it’s all said and done, the superintendent, who declined to give his name, said.

Taxpayer money will not be used, as subcontractors are at fault in both mistakes.
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