Construction, Government, and Real Estate

Downtown government buildings getting $11M update

October 3, 2018
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Grand Rapids City Hall Kent County Administration La Grande Vitesse Calder Plaza
“La Grande Vitesse” by Alexander Calder stands in Calder Plaza in downtown Grand Rapids, in front of Grand Rapids City Hall, top, and the Kent County Administration building, bottom. Photo via fb.com

An $11-million project to update some infrastructure at government buildings downtown will begin next week.

The project on heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems is expected to last 18 to 20 months and will update the systems at Grand Rapids City Hall and the Kent County Administration Building, at 300 Monroe Ave. NW.

Kyle Johnson, assistant project manager in the city’s engineering department, said upcoming construction activities on the exterior of city hall and Calder Plaza include security fencing, dumpster pad installation and material hoist and crane setups.

He said most of the work will go relatively unnoticed within the buildings’ three mechanical rooms.

“Due to the scope and complexity of this project, there will be multiple construction phases to minimize disruptions to daily operations,” Johnson said. “While system changeovers and highly visible events can be expected, we are committed to limiting the impact to those doing business and attending meetings at City Hall and the county administration building.”

This is the first major overhaul to the 49-year-old complex’s HVAC system.

Johnson said the complex’s current system was able to surpass the typical 25-30-year lifespan, due to an aggressive preventative maintenance program established by the city’s facilities management department.

The City Hall 10th-floor mechanical room piece of the project, beginning in November and expected to last nine to 10 months, will require at least seven cranes and Monroe Avenue lane closures, including the Silver Line station.

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