The latest deadline has come and gone for the completion of Royal Palm Beach Commons Park, and the contractor now faces a $1,000-a-day fine, according to Village Manager Ray Liggins.
Liggins reported on the status of the park at a Royal Palm Beach Village Council meeting Thursday, Nov. 1.
In July, the council gave the contractor an extension to Oct. 31 to finish the park, which was a disappointment to council members who had hoped to have the park ready for last summer’s Fourth of July celebration. Instead, the celebration was held at Lakeside Challenger Park, where the festivities have been held in the past.
“Oct. 31 came and went yesterday, and the park is not completed,” Liggins said, explaining that Village Engineer Chris Marsh had met with the contractor that afternoon.
Marsh said that the contractor, West Construction, had committed to completing the project by Oct. 31.
“That did not happen,” Marsh said. “Their primary excuse was that subcontractors have not performed to the schedule they had expected. They passed the buck, but they are currently in default. That costs them $1,000 per day. The best estimate for the completion from them is 60 days. They will provide more detail on the completion schedule.”
Marsh said West is requesting some minor change orders regarding air conditioning, railings and other items that will be presented for council approval at its next meeting. “There are a lot of small items that, unfortunately, are going to add up to a significant cost, but they are committed to complete them, and they are aware that they are in default,” Marsh said.
“So, if they go 60 days, we get $60,000 off the bill?” Mayor Matty Mattioli asked.
“That’s correct,” Marsh replied.
Councilwoman Martha Webster asked whether the contractor was having problems managing its subcontractors, and Marsh explained that one of the subcontractors had gone out of business and the contractor had to assume that work.
“There was a period of time where the contractor had to secure materials from the suppliers and get those things back in order, and then, obviously, assume that work by hiring additional subcontractors or doing that work themselves,” Marsh said. “There was some time out there where progress did slow up. It was noticed and brought up to them. At this point, it seems that progress had been made and they are committed to finishing it.”
Marsh also confirmed a question from Mattioli regarding an irrigation contractor holding up progress. However, removing that contractor at this point would cause further delays. “Obviously, if one subcontractor falls, another is affected,” Marsh said. “It is a complicated project with lots of subcontractors.”