Jackson’s City Council and the Board of County Commissioners convened a review committee to consider the challenges facing both the Snow King Housing / Parks and Recreation Shop and the fire station construction projects.

The committee examined these projects from their inception to their current status to identify specific challenges and make recommendations for more successful outcomes for future projects. The recommendations cover different project phases, including: visioning / inception; Planning & design / front end; and construction.

For visioning / inception, the committee recommends a pre-determined process to help those elected to adhere to the community’s original vision for a particular project. The group requires that all projects over $ 1 million be considered using professional experts, including possibly a project manager, owner representative and / or agent.

Recommendations also include prior consideration of complexity, size, and mixed or specialized components. The committee also noted that the work schedules and capacities of employees are taken into account in the visioning phase. Thorough public engagement at this initial stage and vision is also recommended.

One of the key recommendations for the planning and design / prep phase is to use newly created templates that are regularly updated to reflect the most current land development and local authority regulations. It also calls for the potential to establish “standard operating procedure” criteria for various design milestones highlighting what elements and systems must be included in the plans, including provisions for IT.

The construction phase begins with the examination of offers from contractors. This is where some complications started with these two projects. Learning from these experiences, the committee recommends that the city / county team take special account of the reasons for large discrepancies between the proposed costs.

In order to avoid contracts automatically going to the lowest bidder, the committee recommends a cost-blind application review. Finally, for projects of $ 1 million or more, the committee recommends a third party review and that the blueprints include 3D modeling to identify design problems early.