Mamaroneck Town Changes Bid Strategy For Hommocks Ice Rink Project

The Town of Mamaroneck Board of Trustees discussed their revised bid strategy for the $530K capital project at a Sept. 5 meeting.


Although the Town of Mamaroneck is moving forward with bids to renovate the and increase its environmental efficiencies, the process has been temporarily stymied by price quotes that have come in higher than anticipated.

A bond resolution for the three phase improvement project was voted on by the and will include the replacement of dehumidification, fresh air ventilation and fire alarm systems as well as the lighting over the rink surface, repair of an emissivity (insulated) ceiling and electrical upgrades.

Although the town had originally budgeted $530K for the project—which included design and engineering costs—the bids sent out in August came in over $200K higher than planned, at $793K. 

“This was well above what we had budgeted and estimated for the project,” said Town Administrator Steve Altieri at last week’s board meeting.

According to Altieri, the estimates fell short of expectations for two reasons: the town did not receive as many bids as they originally hoped for as several contractors were working on other projects, leaving them with only a few options.  Additionally, the actual cost for dehumidification equipment had to be adjusted within the budget after the town received an erroneous estimate from a vendor.

The board rejected bids for the electrical and mechanical contracts, instead, awarding a $67K bid to the New Rochelle-based Talt Electric for a fire alarm system replacement.

“Our design engineers will rewrite the bid specs for the electrical contract to only include replacement lighting in the arena,” said Altieri, adding that new bids would be accepted in late September or early October as it is easier to perform the work when the ice surface is in place.

For the remaining phases of the project, however, the board will consolidate the work into one document that will be put out to bid in January, 2013 both to take advantage of better pricing during the off-season as well as to allow more time to figure out ways in which the project can be more environmentally sustainable.

“I want to remind everyone that the ice rink is the largest energy user in the town…due to the age and wear and tear on the equipment for the ice rink, it’s really working overtime and it’s not able to do the job efficiently,” said Town Supervisor Nancy Seligson.

Some of the energy efficient possibilities the town is considering include potentially reusing heat from the ice making machine for the dehumidification system and/or preheating the water utilized by ice reconditioning machine, which will cut down on energy consumption.

The January 2013 bid document will include replacement of the dehumidification and fresh air ventilation systems; repair of an emissivity (insulated) ceiling; electrical system upgrades; replacement of dasherboards, sport court floor, ice floor piping and underground heating as well as installation of reflective roof coating paint.

A majority of the work will take place in the summer of 2013, with the rink's false alarm and lightning in the arena building being performed later this fall.

The next Town of Mamaroneck Board meeting will take place on Sept. 19 at 8 p.m.

Jonathan Sacks September 11, 2012 at 02:19 PM
I'm curious on a few points: 1. What is the estimated savings of reduced energy costs? Are we spending $500k to save $5k a year? 2. If we can afford to bond this work, why can't Rec stay up to date with money owed the school district. I know a big payment was made last year, but why can't the Town stay current on its obligations to the School system? Don't get me wrong, I think this is an important asset that should be maintained, but its fair for the public to know the cost/benefit ratio behind this decision.
Stefani Kim September 11, 2012 at 03:10 PM
Hi JS, I've forwarded your questions to Town Administrator Steve Altieri. Best, Stefani
Mamk NY September 11, 2012 at 03:36 PM
Hommocks rink is a terrific community asset. While the town is reviewing the rink's capital needs and financing, they might also want to examine the rink's revenue model. The rink is significantly under-utilized in the evenings after the school and youth programs finish in March, and lower late-season pricing might help fill the slots.
Stefani Kim September 11, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Hi JS, Here are the answers to your questions from Steve Altieri: 1. The primary reason for the ice rink renovation is that the rink and the associated equipment is over 20 years old and has more than outlived its useful life. In order to keep the facility profitable and accessible to the community the renovation was necessary. The project will provide the additional opportunity of installing more energy efficient machinery however at this point the savings have not been calculated since there has not been a final decision as to type of equipment to be used. 2. The Town and the School District are up to speed on payments due to each other for facility use. The school district has agreed to provide additional information that we have requested to substantiate their billings.
Jonathan Sacks September 11, 2012 at 06:36 PM
With all due respect Stefani... The insulation has outlived its life? The lighting has outlived its life? The electrical has outlived its life? I skate at the rink and yes it would be nice for it to be updated and beautified,but is this the best way for the town to to spend taxpayer money? If the objective is "keep the facility profitable" (which implies that a better looking facility will attract more customers) then I would suggest an incremental approach; address for safety and aesthetics then address infrastructure if you are able to increase attendance. This is how any business would evaluate an investment in an asset. Also, a business would evaluate the cost of the renovation and expense it over time, is the Town considering the debt service plus repayment of the bond principle in figuring "profitability". You need to sell a lot of incremental tickets to cover $500-$700k in debt plus interest, even at the highest price paid $8/non-residents that would be at lease 65,000 visits just to recoup the investment. Seems that the tune has changed a bit, sounds more like someone simply wanted to do this and now is back peddling because of the cost. Are you aware of any hearings or debate on this issue before the board made the decision to bond it? I'm waiting to hear that the contractor they were going to hire was the brother in-law of a board member. Sorry for being so cynical, but when things just jump out like this, there usually is a much larger story.
Stefani Kim September 11, 2012 at 06:49 PM
I am not aware of any hearings or debate on this issue which was originally discussed at a January 2012 board meeting, linked to in the article above. There was no public hearing scheduled specifically to discuss this matter that I am aware of, however, the board does allow time in the beginning of meetings for members of the public to comment on issues affecting the town, which I am assuming includes agenda items. My impression of what the town is trying to achieve surpasses aesthetics and attempts to make the functioning of the building more environmentally sustainable as well as more cost efficient. Doing so requires that old or aging equipment be replaced with newer and more efficient systems that utilize power in a better way. Hope that helps.


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