NEW KNOXVILLE — A second bidding process for a new airport terminal at the Neil Armstrong Airport has been delayed for four to six months to allow re-evaluation of the project’s specifications.
This 15-year effort to replace the almost 50-year-old old terminal with an updated $2.2 million, 4,000-square-foot building did not get any offers when the project was first up for bids in June.
Ted Bergstrom, airport manager, emphasized that all parties involved in this project are still committed to completion of a new building. The total funding for the project has the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) paying 90 percent, with five percent by state funds and the last five percent through a county match.
When the first bid offering yielded no contractors wanting to build the $2.2 million project, the architectural firm in charge, Garmann/Miller, as well as Delta Airport Consultants, began seeking anonymous feedback from these contractors.
Bergstrom said the feedback prompted the delay of seeking a second bid at this time.
“In response to this information, we are going to review this project’s specifications from the top down to find ways to be more cost effective,” he said.
He said the feedback on the lack of contractor interest covered a number of issues. For one, there were questions about whether the funding available will cover the completed project. Another issue appeared to be the volatility in the materials market right now due to the costs of new tariffs. Another concern for contractors was working with FAA on a federal project. Timelines for completion were also a topic contractors questioned. Finally, the airport manager said, “Contractors are just very busy.”
“I wish we could have had a least one bid in June,” said Bergstrom, “Just so we know what we are up against.”
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.