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Completion date pushed back for Woodstock walkway

Published: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

WOODSTOCK – The city will seek new bids for a pedestrian walkway project connected to the expansion of the Woodstock Theatre, pushing the project’s expected completion date back to early June.

The city had hoped to complete the walkway by May 1, in conjunction with the expected opening of all eight screens at the theater, Interim Director of Public Works Jeff Van Landuyt said. But after confusion involving an alternate bid request and a couple of errors found within submitted bids, the City Council voted Tuesday night to reject all bids.

The city plans to reopen the project for bidding on April 5 and bring a recommendation to the City Council on April 16.

“We were hoping to time that opening of the pedestrian walkway with the opening of the theater, but obviously that’s not going to happen,” Van Landuyt said.

Theater managers have said they are shooting for a late summer completion of the project, which in addition to an expansion from four screens to eight includes a restoration of the 85-year-old auditorium and improvements to the building’s outdoor facade.

Rejected bids from the city’s first request ranged from about $110,000 to about $160,000. But two of the five bids contained errors and required corrections.

Additionally, the city had asked for an alternate bid to include a concrete staircase originally set to be funded by Tivoli Enterprises, which owns the Woodstock Theatre.

The alternate bid “did not clearly portray exact costs but rather approximate costs based upon the city’s opinion of those materials to be removed and/or substituted if the alternate was accepted,” City Engineer Alan Wilson said in a memo. That led to confusion among bidders, Wilson said.

The city has since decided to fund the staircase.

“The city kind of wants that to be a public [walkway] so that we can control it,” Van Landuyt said.

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