New Underwood Pool in Flux as Low Bidder Leaves Belmont High and Dry

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The sudden departure of the construction company set to build the new Underwood Pool complex has left the future the town’s facility in flux as officials prepare to convene to discuss Belmont’s options in completing the project by next year.

“We are disappointed that Seaver Construction decided to withdraw its bid, as we were looking forward to working with them to build the new Underwood Pool,” said Adam Dash, the vice chair of the Underwood Pool Building Committee which oversees the pool’s design and construction.

The Belmont Board of Selectmen has announced that it will be holding a special meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 3 at 8 a.m. to discuss the fate of the new complex with the Underwood Pool Building Committee at Town Hall.

Under the Building Committee’s tentative timeline, construction on the two-pool complex was scheduled to begin in September with completion by the first day of summer 2015, replacing the 102-year-old existing structure.

There is no official word whether the committee’s time schedule remains viable at this late date.

Not only was the Woburn-based company the lowest of four bids to build the $5.2 million project, Seaver was also the only firm to stay within the established budget.

According to a press release from the Belmont Department of Public Works, Seaver withdrew its bid “on the grounds of having made a clerical error” in determining their cost in completing the project.

Under state law, public construction regulations prevent adjustments from being made after bids are submitted.

But even calculating in the error, according to the DPW, Seaver’s bid would have still been within the project’s budget and would have remained the low bid.

Seaver has built several projects in Belmont, including il Casale Restaurant in Belmont Center, converting a private house into the Belmont Hill School new Alumni Center and a high-end residential home at 365 Marsh St.

Dash said the committee “would like to review the options going forward with the Town Administrator [David Kale] and the Board of Selectmen.”

 

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