Tbnewswatch Local News
Monday June 29 2015
7:11 PM EDT
2014-03-01 at 09:40

Golf Links Road budgets falls $1M short

By Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com

The first phase of construction on Golf Links Road will cost city coffers about $1 million more than orginally bugeted for.

City council will hear Monday that more than $968,000 is needed to fill in the shortfall, bringing the total contract to more than $7.8 million.

City manager Tim Commisso said all of that money is needed as the project took more material than it was budgeted for. When the pavement was ripped up, especially in places like the intersection of Golf Links Road and the Harbour Expressway, more gravel and pavement was needed.

"The intersection there had to actually be raised," he said. "It's the type of thing that happens. These are big projects."
All of the money needed went into the ground for material Commisso said.

The city's roads budget came in under what it needed overall. Commisso said that money will be used to cover the Golf Links project.
"In this case we can use that to offset this," he said.

Some roads projects scheduled for this year might also be delayed as a result, including Brown Street and Leslie Street. 

Also Monday, council will be asked to enter into an agreement with the Ministry of Rural Affairs for a $2.2 million project to rebuild the Court Street bridge over McVicar Creek.

Click here to submit a letter to the editor.

Click here to report a typo or error



We've improved our comment system.
sawmillsteve says:
Duh...isn't a Civil Engineer suppose to "Engineer" this type of project? Just sayin....
3/3/2014 9:10:12 PM
tired says:
What would be nice, is if whoever is doing the roadwork could do it right the first time ...before they were even done the first section they had to dig up and repair all of the storm drains...unfortunately this seems to be the norm in Thunder Bay
3/2/2014 7:52:01 PM
SomeGuy says:
This happens every where. Thunder Bay is not different than anywhere else.
3/2/2014 9:26:11 PM
smallmouth says:
More conspiracy theory from the only ones to build anything in this city.
3/2/2014 6:15:36 PM
jonthunder says:
City Management, Engineers, and bid selectors should offer an apology and/or resignation.
3/2/2014 3:03:07 PM
nvjgu says:
Don't worry about it. Worry about when it's all cracked, heaved and pot holed in couple years. It's already starting to crack up.
3/2/2014 2:27:36 PM
The Badger Mountain Hermit says:
Complain about waste, mismanagement, cronyism, and all the downright bald-faced lying at City Hole and they call you old, has-been cane-shaker.
3/2/2014 12:16:46 PM
humnchuck says:
Some nicer weather and the resulting reduction in complaining can't come soon enough.
3/2/2014 11:24:10 AM
The Beaver..... says:
I bet that you travel every day over roads and Expressways in our community that the Beaver build fOR you. SO wen the Beaver says ..show me.. he has a very valid concern that something here does not fit. The harbour view Expressway including the Intersection in question was build with 1.2 million ton of backfill The muskeg excavation was in excess of 30 feet so here we have a City Manager and Engineering department telling me the extensive extra cost was due to more fill needed. Somebody is kidding somebody here but they can not kid the Beaver on this issue. Anyway keep traveling over some the Beavers roads and you know what.. most of them to this day show no frost heaves the Beaver is very is proud of that, and you should be as well because you got what you paid for. If the material over run is close to 100.000 ton then that is incredible, so please tell me were it went. Fair question I would think.
3/2/2014 11:20:18 AM
fastball says:
Yes - the muskeg and the dreaded Northwood "sink syndrome".
By all means, let's build a giant facility and parking lot right on top of the bog.
3/2/2014 8:08:34 PM
riv3rc4rd says:
Deal with it people, nothing you can do about it. wait!! Oh yes there is.... complain and get nowhere.
3/2/2014 10:11:29 AM
smallmouth says:
Wow. All of these intelligent, insightful people. It sure is comforting to know that there is so many people with all of the answers.
3/2/2014 9:06:18 AM
The Beaver..... says:
So is the City saying that the over run
of material could be as high as 100 thousand ton ..??? That's a big pile of gravel.
3/2/2014 8:09:03 AM
Eastender says:
Yes probably nonexistent gravel
3/2/2014 12:38:06 PM
nvjgu says:
Oh really, city roads came in under budget. How could that be when most streets are a mess and would destroy a small car.
3/2/2014 7:08:25 AM
Eastender says:
The oldest scam in tne book, charging for invisible fill. Doesnt any one do an audit on the amount of gravel that goes into the project. The contractors tried to do that when i worked for the old dept. of highways, but they were kept audited, and didnt like it. Commisso, asleep at the wheel.
3/1/2014 10:42:52 PM
The Beaver..... says:
Ok so the Grade calculation was incorrect and more Gravel was needed.
In this day and age with modern survey and GPS availability this should not happen but it can and will. What I don't understand is why that should affect the Asphalt quantity the pavement would rise with the grade and still would be LENGT x WITH x DEPT. So one can assume that the designers are at fault here and if it was done by consultants then the onus is on them not the Tax Payer

3/1/2014 9:40:08 PM
menotyou says:
Has anyone actually looked at the bids for these? The company who wins the bid gives the lowest tender and the city assumes this is going to be good, however the company who won the contract I believe has underbid before and the jobs have costed a bunch more. Its the easiest way to make money...guarantee the lowest tender while the city assumes the risk of it going over budget, this company wins the contract and who would have known it was gonna go over budget....I bet the company did...
Someone needs to look into this each and every time it happens. Maybe have a clause in each tender to not allow that company to have any other contract if this happens. I'm pretty sure the company has been in the news before for this type of issue or something very similar. Just my thoughts....
3/1/2014 9:10:59 PM
anvil of crom says:
is it me or are the roads in this town really falling apart...look at them after this winter!!
To add look at all these water main breaks....somethings got to give, my taxes went up and their going to keep going up with the basics degrading as fast as they are.
I say lets stick to priorities, get the infrastructure in this town up to par.
The events centre is on the back burner when the basics are suffering.
3/1/2014 8:44:06 PM
orig junkyarddog says:
Projects do tend to overrun budgets ,But here it's more a practice of a rule. These companies being contracted take an extraordinary length of time compared to other municipalities. And that my fellow citizens accounts for a goodly amount of wasted ,or dare I say overcharged funds for a contract. One million is a nice bonus . That my opinion .Doug Powell
3/1/2014 7:43:24 PM
blah blah says:
sounds like all you people got the answers. Time to enter your names in the hat for council
3/1/2014 7:26:35 PM
Dbenedic says:
Normally in private practice at this point with a 12% over run on the original budget! the manager responsible should justify why he/she should keep their job. Perhaps, city council could determine who that person or people are and hold them accountable to us tax payers of Thunder Bay.
3/1/2014 6:36:28 PM
musicferret says:
The usual Thunder Bay bonehead markup.

Same thing will happen on the events centre, and of course it will be taxpayers holding the bag on the white elephant.
3/1/2014 6:07:40 PM
tom0066 says:
Imagine what the cost overrun would have been if they actually lined the lanes properly. Heading north on golf links approaching harbour expressway is a joke. Who planned that one out??!! Apparently it wasn't planned out. This city's planning is a joke! 8 million dollar contract and that's the type of work we get? And also lights at central? I couldn't believe it when I saw yet another set of lights going up. It's time to use some outside the box thinking...a roundabout would've worked just fine there! Don't give me the excuse that tbay drivers can't handle it, they'll figure it out or take another route!
3/1/2014 5:56:39 PM
ring of fire dude says:
Wait for the budget overruns on the Event Center , I'm thinking 25% .
3/1/2014 5:12:53 PM
Common cents says:
No one wll anwser the question on how much it will cost to move the Camelot Street transformer station and were a new one will be built..
3/1/2014 7:52:46 PM
jimmyboy says:
Well nothing in Thunder Bay will ever come close to our Regional Hospital being over budget by a whopping 58% ( budget of 164 million $$$ vs. completed cost of 315 million $$$ )
3/2/2014 11:01:42 PM
unknowncronik says:

yea round it up to a million five soon enough...
3/1/2014 4:46:24 PM
virtualrealityczech says:
Ouch! That's approximately a 14% difference from the original budget!
3/1/2014 4:37:44 PM
Rock49 says:
It would have been nice to be budget. I must say that they did a very nice job twinning that road and didn't cut corners to save a dollar. Nice work.
3/1/2014 3:26:16 PM
Common cents says:
Rock49 are talking about the same project?

You must not use the on and off ramps (if can actually call them such).

This city and who ever gave the green light to such design of the Harbour/Golf Links intersection has NO vision for the future.

3/1/2014 7:44:44 PM
Common cents says:
Are you kidding me......

With the lack of proper on and off ramps,,,, they saved money....

This entire council must go !!!!!!!!
3/1/2014 3:22:42 PM
SomeGuy says:
You are aware that they are certain standards that road designs have to conform to, and they don't make it up as they go right?
3/2/2014 9:29:01 PM
gotcha says:
15 - 20 % short fall! Close if you were playing toss the hand grenade. I know where you can find the funds! Hobbs & Co. have a Fun Fund that can be used for such an event.
Next time try a Fixed Price contract as your experts lack expertise. And yes you can have a fixed price on Road Work especially a relatively small one like Golf Links.
3/1/2014 3:01:04 PM
livewire says:
I would like to know WHO was in charge of the engineering and cost of this project. The said party should be responsible for the cost and not the tax payers. This is starting to become another waterfront and as usual city council is not running this city it is city administration. No city engineers on the project plus no one watching the cost of the project or any city project for the dollar cost over run on projects.
3/1/2014 1:56:40 PM
Me n My Opinion says:
"The said party should be responsible for the cost". Does this mean that the said party should get to pocket the amounts on projects that are under budget?
3/1/2014 6:42:16 PM
Brutus02 says:
"The intersection there had to actually be raised," he said. "It's the type of thing that happens. These are big projects."
All of the money needed went into the ground for material Commisso said.

Funny, on roadway projects I've work on I've never seen this. Basic highway design, 12% error in costing must be nice to have a job with zero accountability.
3/1/2014 1:14:26 PM
wetotter says:
"The intersection there had to actually be raised," he said. "It's the type of thing that happens. These are big projects."

But did not include that into the budget???? Its always easier to give back then ask or look for more....Good thing there was some leftovers from other projects to cover and not raise our taxes!
3/1/2014 12:41:59 PM
tiredofit says:
And they say it's Dirt Cheap huh... I guess dirt isn't that cheap after all now is it.
3/1/2014 12:20:15 PM
jimmyboy says:
OMG....YET another "OVER BUDGET" Cling On item from 2013 here in Thunder Bay...does anyone know how to create a real working budget over at city hall....this is purely typical so it seems over the past number of years...
3/1/2014 12:15:51 PM
ring of fire dude says:
Well , Who would of thought
3/1/2014 12:03:25 PM
rootbear says:
I can see paying a million dolloars for dirt(:I) but more pavement was needed? Isn't it so wide by so long by so thick?
3/1/2014 11:56:22 AM
buckwheat says:
every member of city council and every member of city administration needs to hand in their resignation effective immediately. This is an embarrassment and a disgrace every project in this town comes in over budget and the taxpayers get shafted. Enough is enough, do the taxpayers a favor you all need to hand in your resignations.
3/1/2014 10:12:56 AM
p.o.ed taxpayer says:
This is all part of the corporate welfare program....companies no longer have to hire their own experts and do the groundwork before submitting a bid and with that came a certain amount of risk...now they submit lowballed cost plus bids to get the job and the taxpayer takes all the risk...that is in large part why all of these government projects come in well over budget, yet the contractor makes his margin...go back to the old system of fixed prices and if they whine that they can't give a firm price then scuttle the job or keep looking till you find a company that wants the work...
3/1/2014 6:57:29 PM
S Duncan says:
what about re-new Thunder Bay?

surely we can use that money for the silly infrastructure we call roads?
3/1/2014 9:44:35 AM
Me n My Opinion says:
Why would they use that when they have money left over from under budget projects?
3/1/2014 6:36:37 PM
chezhank says:
As the article quite clearly states:
"Some roads projects scheduled for this year might also be delayed as a result, including Brown Street and Leslie Street."
So $545,000 of that roadwork will be delayed because of the overrun on Phase 1 Golf/ Links Road,a Renew Thunder Bay pilot project. Read the appropriation order

So S Duncan is quite right to ask "what about re-new Thunder Bay?"
3/2/2014 8:01:35 PM
Eastender says:
"Its the type of thing that happens. These are big projects".

This is the best excuse that the city manager can come up with? For a short fall of almost a million dollars?

We need a better explanation than that Commisso. If not, then we need a new manager, because this sounds like incompetence somewhere, or worse.
3/3/2014 8:21:42 AM
Comments for this story are semi-moderated. Read our comment guideline.

Add a new comment.
You must log in to add comments.
Create a new account
Log In