WAPS Board members were shocked to learn the high cost of the only bid the district received for the replacement of the press box at Paul Giel Field and improvements to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Although the project was estimated at $80,000 at a previous board meeting, the bid recently submitted by Wapasha Construction was $249,000 including $23,000 for change orders.
“Honestly, we thought it would cost $120,000, but the cost is what it is,” WAPS Finance Director Dan Pyan told the board. “Never once in the last four years [did we think] it would cost this much money.”
Ultimately, the board rejected the offer, but not before concerns were expressed about an increased price in the future. “I imagine another five years and the press box is going to cost even more,” said board member Jeanne Nelson of the Paul Giel Field "press box," from which sports announcers and others view games.
WAPS Director of Activities Brad Berzinski explained that the new press box construction might not be able to wait. “If we wait, the press box might not be there much longer,” he said. “The press box is literally crumbling as we speak.”
In a separate interview after the meeting, Pyan explained that by law, WAPS was required to go through a competitive bid process. Only one company bid, and the price was much higher than expected. “The estimate was incorrect, obviously,” stated Pyan.