Parking garage construction stays within budget despite extra work

New Parking Garage

Fourth Avenue Parking Garage will ticket vehicles that extend past 18-foot spaces starting in January.

With crews wrapping up construction at the Fourth Avenue Garage, the project will finish on its $12.4 million budget despite extra construction work early in the semester.

Mike Buchert, director of Long Range Facilities Planning, said J.E. Dunn Construction paid for the extra construction.

“They have to do it at no additional cost to Oklahoma State University,” Buchert said. “We enter a contract, they need to do the job. There are instances where there are unforseen circumstances where we add costs, but, in this particular case, it will be included at no charge.”

The extra work at each end of the garage repaired topping slabs in the concrete on three floors. The slabs are large, weighted pieces of concrete used to secure structural points inside the garage.

Buchert said workers struggled to pour the concrete flat, which would ensure water could drain away and had to redo the slabs several times.

“They put on a 3-inch reinforced concrete slab on top of all the supporting beams to tie everything together,” Buchert said. “And when they did that, they had some problems where they lost control and made it too thick or too thin in some areas, and they have to redo it.”

The O’Colly asked with speak to a J.E. Dunn employee about the project, but Buchert said it was university policy to not allow media to talk with construction contractors unless questions were provided in advance.

The O’Colly reached out to J.E. Dunn’s media relations department, which provided contact information for the garage’s project and group managers.

Project Manager Scott Johnson said he wouldn’t comment on the garage until he had cleared it with LRFP.

Students parking in the garage have mixed opinions about the new space. Brandon Bos, a fire protection senior, said it has been a bad experience for him with the construction and limited access to the garage.

“The construction going on in it while it’s open, plus the cost of it,” Bos said. “Now the construction going on around it, I come in off (Highway) 51, and it makes more issues getting to it.”

Starting Wednesday, crews closed the Fourth Avenue entrance because of ongoing construction in the 400 blocks of South Hester and Ramsey streets for the Avid Square apartment complex.

Caitlyn Deason, a health education senior, said although the construction was noisy, she thinks it's better than parking in the gravel lot.

“It’s a lot more parking; I don’t have to fight for a spot every day,” Deason said. “I don’t have to get here 45 minutes before my class, so that’s nice.”