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NCCC culinary builder to be selected

Thirteen companies are to be interviewed this week after submitting bids to handle the architectural and engineering work for the new Niagara County Community College culinary institute.

NCCC President James P. Klyczek said Friday that he expects the college board of trustees to award a contract at its Jan. 19 meeting.

The deadline for contractors to bid to become the construction manager on the project was extended from Friday to Jan. 18 after questions posed at the pre-bid meeting with contractors led to some minor revisions in the terms of the request for proposals, Klyczek said.

He said he anticipates that prospective construction management firms will be interviewed during the week of Jan. 24, with a contract likely to be approved at the Feb. 2 trustees' meeting.

The culinary institute is to be installed in the former Rainbow Centre Mall in downtown Niagara Falls. The former owner, Cordish Co., donated it to the NCCC Foundation, which in turn deeded most of it to the City of Niagara Falls.

The college held on to 70,000 square feet, or about one-third of the mall.

Klyczek said it's hard to say which of the architectural and engineering firms was the low bidder. "Everybody's got their own pricing strategies," he said.

Some companies want a percentage of the total cost; others will work on an hourly basis; and some have optional design or kitchen specialists, which would increase their prices.

They include some joint bids by companies who want to team up for the culinary project.

Klyczek said the budget for the project envisions spending up to 4 percent to 10 percent of the gross construction cost on the architectural-engineering contract.

The gross construction cost for the institute alone is $17.1 million, he said. The total cost of the project, $26.3 million, includes a renovation of the parking ramp attached to the mall. That's not something NCCC has to pay for, Klyczek said.

e-mail: tprohaska@buffnews.com

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