The clerestory window walls on the aquaplex roof showed a need for a $20,000 change order to the $500,000 project. Town of Ponoka council was displeased with the change order, a second in recent weeks, and asked for more stringent project management. Town of Ponoka photos

Second aquaplex roof change order frustrates town council

Town of Ponoka council unhappy to see a $20,000 additional cost

Town of Ponoka councillors didn’t shy away from showing their frustration at a second change order to the aquaplex roof repair.

The information item was presented to council Dec. 12 during the regular meeting where an additional $20,000 was requested to complete the project.

“We are continually getting change orders,” said Coun. Teri Underhill in clear frustration.

The change order comes with the clerestory window walls on the roof where insulation is to be sprayed. According to the contractor the OSB sheathing around the windows is severely rotted.

“To fix the problem, the windows will need to be pulled out, the furring and OSB will all need to be stripped off,” states the information item.

Wes Amendt, director of community services, said the windows are in good order but it was seeing inside under the windows that the rot is there.

“Why wouldn’t our engineers check the area and why are we on the hook for this?” asked Underhill.

“It seems awkward but when we have a substantial contingency fund, it gets hit twice,” she added, referring to a previous change order.

The half a million dollar project has a 10 per cent contingency fund and a first request of $21,500 was already put in and approved.

CAO Albert Flootman said that in most construction projects, while it’s not ideal, a 10 per cent contingency fund is needed. He pointed out that with many projects there’s unknowns that come out, even in new building projects.

“When you’re renovating an existing building there’s a lot of unknowns to it,” said Flootman.

In one sense he was pleased the contractor pointed out the rot because some contractors might just cover the issue without making any changes.

Among the other issues the contractor found was that no vapour barrier was installed in the affected area during construction, which allowed moisture to get inside the wall cavity.

“There is no membrane flashing under the window fins and the Tyvek air barrier is simply taped to the window nailing fins. This is why the wall is primarily rotted through at the bottom.” states the information item from the contractor.

Coun. Kevin Ferguson took issue with what appears to be over spending on town projects.

“If we don’t get a handle on this it’s going to keep coming back,” said Ferguson, adding that administration needs to find a solution.

Mayor Rick Bonnett suggested the labour costs need to be considered. He challenged the additional cost and the estimated labour time.

“There’s some significant dollars that don’t make sense on this quote,” added Underhill.

“We pushed back pretty hard on this to find a better solution,” replied Flootman, who pointed out the actual hours of work will be monitored.

Flootman said that that project manager plans to be on site daily from now on and the work will be on actual hours related to the project.

“We definitely hope that this comes in significantly lower,” said Bonnett.

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