Crozet Library Goes to Bid; Construction to Start in July

The Albemarle County Architectural Review Board approved this design of the new Crozet Library April 4, 2011.

About 20 representatives of construction companies, many from major firms, showed up for the pre-bid meeting for the new Crozet library held at Crozet United Methodist Church Feb. 23. A list of who attended is posted on the county procurement department’s webpage.

The county project manager Ron Lilley said the crowd was evidence of “a good level of interest.” He was joined at a table by the building’s designers and engineer from Grimm and Parker Architects.

Brian McPeters of Kimley Horn in Richmond, who is the engineer for the Crozet Avenue streetscape project, was present to answer questions about it because the two jobs are now expected to happen at the same time. “We will likely need coordination,” he said.

Plans for the library are drawn as if the streetscape (first expected to be done in 2008) is in place. If the streetscape does not start soon, the builder of the library might be obliged to do about 100 feet of the sidewalk and sewer project in order to be able to make progress on the library.

“It’s a builder-friendly site,” said Lilley. “It has a parking area and a staging area.” The representatives all walked across the street later to eyeball the location.

Lilley said that a deeper excavation into the hillside, once desired for enlarging the square footage of the lower level, is not in the plan now. “It’s a money decision,” explained Lilley. Asked later, the architects estimated that the planned area could be doubled in size for another $150,000 to $200,000. It is not feasible to excavate later.

The library, which is funded in the county’s proposed budget for 2012-13, is expected to start construction in July. Lilley said contractors can start in June, but no payments will be made until July. Some venerable oak trees on the neighboring property will come down when construction starts.

Bidders must familiarize themselves with two volumes of specifications and one of drawings. Bids are due at the procurement office by 3 p.m. March 28.

The Library will be LEED Silver certified, a distinction of a “green” building.

If the county budget passes with the library still included, the new 23,000-square-foot facility is slated to open in the summer of 2013.

Architect Todd Willoughby of Grimm and Parker said he expected bids to come in somewhere between $5 million and $6 million.