The Duluth City Council awarded the contract for demolition of three aging buildings on the Old City Hall Block in a called meeting Monday (June 18) to Suwanee-based Alan Densmore Inc. in an amount not to exceed $90,000.
The city has used the Densmore firm, the second lowest bidder, before and was familiar with the company’s work. City staff was unable to verify references of the lowest bidder. Densmore’s $87,709 bid includes asbestos abatement.
The demolition projects include the building that housed Boudreaux’s Cajun Market and The Boiler Room at Main Street and Hwy. 120, an adjacent building that was used for props storage by New Dawn Theatre Company, and an alleyway connecting the theater to the storage facility.
The Boudreaux’s/Boiler Room building had been is scheduled to be torn down to accommodate realignment of Ga. Hwy. 120 and to provide additional downtown parking. The city proposes to use Service Delivery Strategy settlement funds along with SPLOST monies earmarked for the Ga. Hwy. 120 realignment for the demolition.
The Boiler Room is relocating to the former Duluth Art Gallery on West Lawrenceville Street. The roof supports in the building have been stabilized. New Dawn may be able to store props for its productions in the Old City Hall administration building, also on W. Lawrenceville St. Boudreaux’s relocated the restaurant it operated in conjunction with the market to Duluth Station Shopping Center on Buford Highway and renamed it Café Acadiana.
After pre-demolition work is completed, the buildings are expected to be razed in July, according to City Manager Tim Shearer.
A joint meeting of the city council and the Downtown Development Authority is being considered to discuss the rehabilitation of other city-owned buildings on the block.
In other activity at the called meeting, the council:
- Approved adjustments to Shearer’s employment contract that included giving him a 9 percent raise to $120,000 a year and increasing his automobile allowance.
- Authorized the expenditure of up to $54,000 in SPLOST funds to purchase steel-coated low-maintenance metal playground equipment from the BCI Burke company to replace deteriorating wooden equipment at W.P. Jones Park. Duluth Parks and Recreation Department Director Kathy Marelle, who requested the new equipment, said a grant obtained through Burke’s “Cash 4 Kids” program would allow the city to replace the equipment at a discount. The city would have to spend $15,000 to $20,000 to repair it, Marelle said. The new modernistic equipment, she said, allows children “to become physically fit while having fun.” Click here to see some of the equipment.
- Adopted a 10-year plan to bring city buildings and facilities into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act required by the Georgia Department of Transportation. Each city department had prepared a report on deficiencies.
- Authorized Planning Director Glenn Coyne to appoint members of a stakeholders committee to assist the Atlanta Regional Commission in simplifying the special districts and overlays applicable to downtown Duluth.