As South Whitehall Township officials proceed with plans and estimates to renovate their municipal complex, it appears that the initial estimate touted last April will be increasing from between $8.5 to $9 million to approximately $11.5 million.
The increase is because the price per-square-foot to build commercially has risen around 25%, and the township is considering growth in the future, South Whitehall Township Director of Finance Steve Carr said at Wednesday's commissioners meeting.
The board approved a $450,000 move of funds from the capital budget to a separate account to pay for architecture, design, and permitting fees all in order to set the project in motion.
Proposed renovations include a new office building addition with a singular front entrance, contemporary designed front lobby, and new meeting room with a cathedral-style ceiling built large enough to seat 100 persons. The addition will also be designed keeping future expansion plans in mind. The police department will remain on the lower level in the rear of the building.
However, Carr noted original plans to relocate the township recycling and refuse center to outside the municipal complex have been abandoned in lieu of moving it elsewhere on the municipal campus located behind the library on property that South Whitehall already owns.
Proposed improvements that have not been included in project's initial specs are a fueling station for township vehicles, carports for police cruisers, completion of the unfinished office shell and furniture.
Carr said it would cost the township $3.5 million to replace the heating and air conditioning system currently used in the complex. The system was originally built in stages between 1986 and 1995.
Pidcock and Co. will be the project's civil engineer, MKSD the official architectural firm, and Boyle Construction will be hired as the general contractor, Carr said.