Renovations to the historic station building on Spruce Street South were formally approved by city council on Tuesday night.
Two separate repair projects, carried out by two different companies, will cost the city a total of $214,500.
BNP Industries will be replacing the windows at the cost of $69,000 + HST. Three tenders were received for the project with the high end of $115,500+HST. The city's estimate for the project was $100,000, with 50 percent of the costs covered by the province's Public Transportation Infrastructure Fund (PTIF).
Cy Rheault Construction, who missed out on the window contract, will be replacing the exterior handrails and refurbishing the concrete walkway surrounding the building to the tune of $145,000 + HST. A total of four bids were received for that project, at the high end of $288,230+HST. The city's estimate within the 2017 budget was $150,000, again with the PTIF covering half of the costs.
The building was constructed in 1916 and served as the city's central railway station until the mid 1990's. The city says the windows are in poor condition allowing cold air to blow through the building. New fibreglass frames will be installed. In addition, city staff say that the handrails are bent, twisted, and severely damaged in many areas. The concrete staircases are in deteriorating condition, so they will be removed, replaced, and re-coated.
The building currently serves at the main Timmins Transit terminal, as well as the Ontario Northland bus and parcel service's Timmins station.
The only comments surrounding the projects during Tuesday's meeting came from Councillor Joe Campbell, who inquired about the city's oversight on construction projects.
"When we go out for a tender, do we have drawings on something like this? Does anybody in-house do a definitive cost estimate to see if the bids that we get are reasonable? Because I went over there to look at this job today, and I'm not a construction guy, but $145,000 is a lot of money for what that job is sitting there," he said, adding that he wants to know if the city is getting fair value for its dollar.
Mayor Steve Black deferred the question to Director of Community and Development Services Mark Jensen.
"Yes, we do make an effort to come up with our own estimates, and sometimes we pull engineers to help us with estimates on more complex projects," said Jensen.
"Thank you," replied Campbell.
Both motions passed unanimously.