The Altoona Water Authority recently approved amendments to contracts with its consulting engineer that add $300,000 to the firm’s bill for proposed renovations at the Bellwood Dam and the Bellwood Water Treatment Plant.
The additional amount for work by Gwin Dobson & Foreman brings the authority’s total obligation to the firm for the projects to $1.66 million.
Adding $175,000 to the previous $808,000 bill for the dam were Gwin’s answering of comments by the state Department of Environmental Protection on the report of a geotechnical subcontractor; design of a downstream embankment needed to comply with a safety directive; a stability analysis needed to validate findings of the geotechnical subcontractor; design of a downstream filter drain to comply with a safety directive; designing, planning and permitting for disposal of silt on various sites on state gamelands; answering DEP comments on dam safety; revisions and updates of plans and specifications; and additional project management and specifications, according to an amendment draft signed by company President Mark Glenn.
That additional work added 2,000 hours to the approximately 9,500 hours the firm had otherwise committed to the dam project, according to the agreement.
Adding $125,000 to the previous $555,000 bill for the treatment plant were lab analysis costs for the pilot testing of a membrane filter system; additional labor for final design of that system because the pilot study was extended from three to six months; a plant process justification; design for replacement of more than 100 valves; work on a reservoir aeration system, the plant’s ultraviolet radiation system and its finish water pumps; answering comments on a DEP review of the authority’s water supply permit application; revisions and updates of plan specifications; and additional project management and consultation, according to the agreement.
“I recognize the need for this amendment,” authority General Manager Mark Perry said after Glenn made a presentation on the changes.
At least some of the changes that “overextended” the firm on the Bellwood projects resulted from DEP’s revisiting issues the authority thought had been settled, Perry said.
Mirror Staff Writer William Kibler is at 949-7038.