by Pam Zubeck
UPDATE: County procurement manager Eileen Gonzales says the $720,322 figure is wrong, although that's the figure on the agenda and on the minutes showing unanimous approval by commissioners. She says the figure mistakenly included a feature the county decided not to get, so the actual contract price is $681,915.
Looks like the El Paso County commissioners will have offices fit for the ruling class under a plan to spend $720,322 remodeling Centennial Hall, 200 S. Cascade Ave.
Bids are listed on the county's website under the "not yet awarded" category, but the Sept. 27 commissioner agenda carried an item seeking to approve the contract with GH Phipps, a contractor which has a Springs office but is based in Greenwood Village. Phipps' original bid was $681,915, but somewhere along the line it was increased. The expenditure was approved unanimously, according to the minutes.
Centennial Hall, built in 1976, will serve as offices for the five commissioners, the county attorney's office, county administrator, budget officer and PR people.
The other bids:
Copestone General Contractor, $686,490
HW Houston Construction, $749,000
Daniel-Barry Construction, $752,450
Elder Construction, $778,138
The project is part of the commissioners' grand facilities plan that led them to borrow roughly $50 million to buy the former Intel building on Garden of the Gods Road and move many county offices there that had been located downtown, such as the Assessor's and Treasurer's Offices.
The money also is being used to remodel the County Administration Building for the Sheriff's Office, remodel Centennial Hall for commissioners as explained here, and do energy conservation work on the county's buildings. The county plans to sell the buildings from which the Health Department (South Union Boulevard) and Department of Human Services (Spruce Street) moved to the Citizens Service Center on Garden of the Gods Road.