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Monday, February 26, 2024
Feb. 26, 2024

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Wheels come off Camas plan to remodel skate park after city budget falls 43% short of bid

Lone bid comes in 43% more than city’s budget

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Camas officials have hit “pause” on a long-awaited effort to replace the city’s rundown skate park equipment with more durable poured-concrete elements after a lone bid came in significantly over the city’s budget.

“The project has had great momentum, but right now, we’re in a little bit of a pause,” Camas Parks and Recreation Director Trang Lam told Camas City Council members at the council’s Oct. 3 meeting.

Lam said the city recently put out a call for bids on the skate park’s two-phase remodel, but that, “due to timing and market circumstances,” only received one bid.

Grindline Skateparks, Inc., of Seattle, estimated it would cost a total of $369,473 to complete both phases of the skate park improvements — an estimate that is 43 percent higher than the city’s budget for the skate park remodel.

Grindline estimated that, including more than $28,000 in sales taxes, it would cost the skate park-construction company $274,834 to complete the first phase and $94,639 to complete the second phase — estimates that were, respectively, 52 percent and 35 percent over the city’s budget, Lam said.

“Because the city only received one bid package at a substantially higher bid price than our estimate, staff recommends that the bid package be rejected and the city rebids the project early next year,” Lam stated in her staff report to the council. “Rebidding (in early 2023) will likely garner more participants to the process, which allows the city to evaluate multiple bid packages to ensure that we are receiving the most competitive offers.”

The council voted unanimously to reject Grindline’s bid and go out for more bids on the skate park remodel in early 2023.

City leaders and skateboard enthusiasts in Camas and Washougal have been working since 2018 to improve the 20-year-old outdoor Camas Skate Park, 2900 N.E. Third Ave., near the Camas-Washougal border, and had hoped to see construction begin this fall.

In August, Lam told city officials the skate park project was put on hold for two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic but had recently picked up some steam thanks to fundraising efforts by community members, the Camas Parks Foundation and the Parks Foundation of Clark County, which recently added nearly $30,000 to the skate park improvement efforts.

“There is a lot of energy around this project,” Lam said about the skate park improvements in August. “This energy has continued over multiple years. A lot of business owners are young adults who came up here and are still skaters … and they’ve stepped up and helped fund this.”

The city allocated $75,000 in its capital budget for the park, and Lam said there is money in the city’s Parks and Recreation capital budget to improve Camas’ parks and trail systems that could be used to help fund the skate park improvements.

Lam said in August that she also has a personal affinity for the skate park revamp.

“I grew up skating and have friends that are skaters,” the parks director said, “so it’s close to my heart.”

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