Most Phase I riverfront construction spending will go to Fort Wayne-area contractors

May 8th, 2017

By Kevin Kilbane | The News-Sentinel

The Fort Wayne City Council will be asked this month to approve more than $17 million in construction contracts for building the city's downtown riverfront park, and most of the money will stay here with local contractors.

The 18 contracts total a combined $17,154,559, the city of Fort Wayne announced Wednesday at a press conference on the historic Wells Street bridge over the St. Marys River. The park project will go from the bridge east to Harrison Street on both the north and south sides of the river.

The only contract going to an outside company will be one for $3,069,000 to Kenny Construction of Northbrook, Ill., which will build the concrete dock walls and the Tree Canopy Trail, said John Perlich, city public information officer.

Most of the subcontractors working on the project also will be local companies, said Rob Young, senior director of business development at Hagerman Group, the construction manager for the project.

"A lot of people want to be involved in a (community) project like this," Chris Freiburger, Hagerman's estimator for the project, said of bidding by local construction companies.

Hagerman has done similar projects in Fort Wayne and at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, Young said. The company's Fishers office also handled a lot of the riverfront work in downtown Indianapolis.

The construction contracts are scheduled to be introduced at the City Council meeting this Tuesday night at Citizens Square, 200 E. Berry St. Discussion and a preliminary vote could take place May 16, with a final vote possible May 23.

The contracts also will be presented for approval at the Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department's board of park commissioners meeting May 11 at Citizens Square.

Funding to pay for the construction will come from $10 million in Legacy funds approved by city council, nearly $5.2 million in Regional Cities program funds from the Northeast Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA) and more than $4.8 million in donations and sponsorships of park features.

Construction work likely will start in late June or early July on the north bank of the St. Marys River, Young said. Construction is expected to start in late August or early September on the south bank.

The entire project should be completed by late 2018, with a grand opening expected in spring 2019, said Al Moll, Fort Wayne Parks director.

The north bank will feature a children's play area, trail through the tree canopy, boat dock and restrooms near the play area. The south bank will include a pavilion, dining garden, lawn area, band shell, plaza, educational water feature, terraced riverbank area, boat dock and restrooms.

Seeing the project ready to start is exciting because it fulfills a 100-year-old community dream of using the rivers, said Michael Galbraith, RDA administrator and the director of the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership's Road to One Million project.

A century ago, city leaders first started trying to incorporate the St. Marys, St. Joseph and Maumee rivers into local planning and development, Galbraith said after the city's press conference.

Contracts up for approval

These are the riverfront park construction contracts the Fort Wayne City Council and Fort Wayne Board of Park Commissioners will be asked this month to approve. All are local contractors except for Kenny Construction of Northbrook, Ill.

  • Demolition, Excavation and Site Work – Crosby Excavating, $2,321,190
  • Landscaping – Dave Harlow Enterprises, $2,498,906
  • Concrete Dock Walls and Tree Canopy Trail – Kenny Construction of Northbrook, Ill., $3,069,000
  • Site Concrete – Hamilton Hunter Builders, $1,780,629
  • Masonry – Hamilton Hunter Builders, $218,109
  • Structural Steel Fabrication – Almet, Inc., $1,966,000
  • Miscellaneous and Structural Steel Erection – Don Fruchey, Inc., $220,500
  • General Trades – Fetters Construction, $1,290,000
  • Roofing – C.L. Schust, $155,000
  • Aluminum Storefront and Glazing – Hall Aluminum Products, $327,000
  • Finishes – Rosema Corporation, $251,000
  • Fire Protection – VFP Fire Systems, $49,947
  • Mechanical – Project Design and Piping, $863,000
  • Electrical – Hambrock Electrical, $1,385,500
  • Trailhead Restroom, $208,662
  • Harrison Street Asphalt Paving – Crosby Excavating, $58,190
  • Playground Equipment and Surfacing, $200,000
  • Site Specific General Conditions, $592,251