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Water Tower Foundation to Cost City Another $124,000

April 25th, 2014 by


burlington tank waterTuesday evening, after considerable discussion, the Monticello City Council approved an amendment to the City’s contract with Utility Service Group to repair and reinforce the foundation of the Burlington water tower. The amount of this contract amendment is $124,200.

The City of Monticello recently signed a $476,000 contract with Utility Service Group to do needed initial repairs on the city’s water towers, and then be responsible for on-going maintenance of the water towers. The terms of the initial contract pro-rate the costs of repairs over a 5 year period. The amended costs of the contract will be billed quarterly over a 5 year term, with 20 payments of $6,210 each.

Brian Woodruff with Utility Service Group was present at the council meeting and explained to the council members that it was USG’s opinion on their initial inspection of the tower that the foundation was adequate. However when the Health Department inspected the tower, they concluded that the foundation was not adequate to support the weight of the 750,000 gallon water tower over time. This was due to issues with the original construction of the tower’s foundation. The Health Department will not issue a work permit for any repairs to be made to the tower until the foundation is adequately reinforced.

The council discussed the option of advertising for bids from other companies. After discussion, they determined that there are a very limited number of companies who have the capability to do this type work, and none in the immediate area. USG has already absorbed the costs of the geological survey, structural analysis, drafting and other expenses which amount to around $15,000 – $20,000. If a new company were brought in to do the work,the city would have to pay for that all over again. In consideration of the extra costs, coupled with the fact that no work can proceed until the foundation is repaired, the council decided it would be more practical and cost-effective to contract with USG to make the needed repairs.

Utility Service Group will excavate the foundation as needed, will drill dowels and epoxy into existing piers, set forms if needed, install a water stop, place and tie reinforcements, place and finish concrete and backfill the excavated area. USG will have to bring in an outside company to work on this with them. The work will be covered under warranty, as long as the city is under contract with USG.

Mr. Woodruff assured the council that there is no danger of the tower collapsing in the next few decades; more likely, if the foundation started to degrade significantly, the tank would begin to sink on one end.

One Response to “Water Tower Foundation to Cost City Another $124,000”

  1. Jack says:

    It is interesting to see that for the same structure, Health Department and USG have opposite opinions on the water tower’s structural integrity. Maybe they applied different assumptions when they do the structural/foundation evaluation. Would the engineering reports by both parties available for public review?

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