Months after a bond was passed to build the new Buena Vista County Jail, the construction bidding opened to contractors this week after a meeting to clarify any questions bidders would have.
"I'm pleased with how the project has been going so far," Rod Moore, the Architect for the jail project, said. "A lot of contractors, material suppliers and others have been in contact with us wanting in, and it's been keeping us busy."
About 12 contractors showed up for the pre-bid meeting to have questions answered from Moore & Associates and Midwest Construction Consultants. The Board of Supervisors were present and were amazed to see such interest in the project.
Supervisor Lorna Burnside commented that the number of contractors present indicates the designers had done a good job.
"I have built a home, barns and sheds, but never a jail," Burnside said.
"I don't know if they will all bid, but at least they are interested," Supervisor Jim Gustafason said.
"There were a lot of contractors here today but there are a lot more that didn't come because they have been through this process before," Moore added.
John Hansen, construction manager from Midwest Construction Consultants, made sure everyone had what they needed and offered to go to the site of the new jail next to the Public Health Office. Hansen is also confident that bids will come in under the county's budget.
"There are always little glitches in the plans," Hansen said. "We just go through them so the contractors can supply the best bid possible."
The new jail bids are being accepted until July 11. Groundbreaking is expected a week or two later. The jail should take about a year to complete.