The Illinois-based firm won the contract for demolition back in February and had 90 days from March 8 to complete the job. According to that timeline, the demolition should have been complete by June 5.
“We knew up front it was going to be more than 90 days,” said Steve Chumley, director of technical services for the Northwest Georgia Housing Authority.
Chumley said about 98 percent of the 150 units have been completely taken down, and Gateway is in the process of sorting the debris to sell off scrap metal and reduce the cost of disposal. The actual demolition work got under way in early March.
Officials with Madison Retail LLC, which will redevelop the site, have been asking for pictures to give potential tenants an idea of what the property might look like. Madison representatives claim Publix grocery has approved the site for a possible location, but a contract has not been signed.
Closing on the sale of the 9-acre tract is expected to take place in October.
Also at the meeting, the authority learned Possibility Construction of Johns Creek is the apparent low bidder for the 10-unit Willingham at Division public housing apartments.
The firm’s low bid for the project was $1,625,000, well under the $2,050,000 budget for the project. Renaissance Builders of Atlanta had the second lowest bid of $1,690,492.
Only two Rome contractors, Jeff Bennett Construction and Pinson’s, tendered bids.
Jay Silverman, project manager for Lord Aeck & Sargent Architecture in Atlanta, has indicated the housing authority will not seek Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for the apartments but that the design of the complex would meet requirements of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s sustainability initiative,
Northwest Georgia Housing Authority Executive Director Sandra Hudson said Wednesday she hopes to hold groundbreaking for the new units on Aug. 18, the same day as an open house for the new Avenue B Apartments.
Both the “green” housing at Willingham and the Avenue B projects are being funded by federal stimulus money.
The Willingham project was competitively bid, while the Avenue B project was financed through a Department of Housing and Urban Development grant.
The NWGHA board also conducted a 70-minute closed meeting to discuss both personnel and real estate matters Wednesday morning. When the session was over, board member Jim Keaten moved to have the board hire an independent counsel to represent the board in a personnel matter. After the meeting, Chairwoman Lee Hight said she could not elaborate on the personnel issue.