Work Samples

  • Megann Horstead

Tinley Park-Park District officials seek cost reductions for Veterans Park improvements

Nearly a year after anticipation in the community arose for Veterans Park improvements to begin, the Tinley Park-Park District looks to identify cost reductions to help propel the project forward.

When a low bid of $1.2 million was read in August 2016, it resulted in the Park Board taking action to rebid the project.

The matter was last reviewed by park board officials at their March 16 meeting.

“We opened bids for the project,” said John Curran, executive director of the Tinley Park-Park District. “It was on the agenda to be discussed. We had a $600,000 budget. The low bid came in too high at $925,000. We didn’t have a lot of discussion. We wanted to see where cost overruns were.”

Curran said he is told that he’ll soon have that information.

“We were looking at doing construction in two phases with a budget of $600,000 [in year one] and 500,000 the next year,” Curran said. “Many of the things we wanted to do in 2017 brought the costs up. We evaluated whether we would need to push [some of the costs] over to 2018.”

That’s when park district officials decided to start trying to reduce project costs by switching out materials for less expensive ones.

“If the project is awarded [to George’s Landscaping] in May, they’d start in June,” Curran said. “There’s no guarantee. That’s when we’d close off the park.”

The project features a number of upgrades, including a new playground, redesign of the Veterans Memorial, a picnic shelter and drainage. Curran said the latter is meant to address flooding issues. The land in question serves in large part as a detention, he said.

“The other 10 percent is above the floodplain,” Curran said. “We’re trying to maximize the amount of water held on that site.”

Other improvements include efforts to relocate the playground from its south center position within the park to the southwest corner on elevated ground. The tennis and basketball courts will be housed in the northeast.

Curran said these moves are also necessary if the park distric