Bunnell will have a nearly all-Flagler County team designing and building its future city hall on Commerce Boulevard, what’s being referred to as an 18,000 square foot Administration/Police Department Complex.
Collage Design and Construction and JPA Architects won the bid and foresee finishing the building sometime in early 2024, with team members Stephenson, Wilcox and Associates (SWA), and Halff and Associates.
Brian Walsh, a Flagler County resident for 35 years, is CEO of the Lake Mary-based Collage Companies. Joseph Pozzuoli is CEO of JPA Architects in Flagler Beach, where he’s had his practice for 16 years. “And the civil engineer,” Bunnell City Commission and Bunnell native John Rogers said, “is non other than Dan Wilcox, who was born and raised in Bunnell, so I believe we’re making a smart choice, spending our money here locally.” Wilcox’s SWA is in Bunnell.
“I knew those faces were familiar, I just couldn’t put a name to it after all this time,” Bunnell mayor Catherine Robinson said. “I think that’s pretty exciting that we have local quality like that, and you’re willing to step forward and do this project for us. That’s very cool.” The commissioners spoke at a January meeting, when they ratified their administration’s recommendation.
The team barely edged out Midway, Fla.-based Ajax Building Company, which just completed the $20 million Sheriff’s Operations Center, a short walk from the future City Hall, and rebuilt built the Palm Coast Community Center, which opened in 2018, among other high-profile projects.
But the Collage team has its share of local projects as well. Joseph Parsons, the project engineer, was the civil designer of the Palm Coast Tennis Center, Pine Lakes Animal Hospital and Bings Landing, the county park. Wilcox, of SWA, was the engineer for improvements at Varn Park, Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area and the Korona fire station.
Walsh’s company rebuilt the Lynx bus system’s Central Station in Orlando, a $20 million project, and the Amtrak train station there, and built the 125,000 square foot, $18 million Fine Arts Complex at the University of North Florida. Pozzuoli’s architectural designs include the recent renovations at the Flagler Auditorium, renovations to a sheriff’s substation and the Funky pelican dumpster enclosure that drew so much attention last year.
The city convened a seven-member selection committee chaired by Marcus DePasquale, the city engineer, and including department heads or their representative. The bids were scored on seven categories, with a maximum score of 280 points. Up to 20 of those points could be awarded to a company with Flagler offices. Some of the committee members gave Ajax high scores for a local presence, some didn’t, with disparities going from zero to 20. The difference helped push Collage over.
“The scoring came out really close in the end, but the company that did achieve the highest score was Collage,” DePasquale said. Collage got 197.86 points, Ajax got 197.43, a difference of 0.43.
Ajax and Collage could have presented their bids to the city commission. The selection committee voted on the question. Six members voted against, only one member voted for–Dave Brannon, who had scored Ajax significantly higher (by 79 points) than Collage, 41 points higher than the next-closest high score for Ajax. So there was no presentation. (See all bid packages here.)
Robinson tried to get a firmer date on when the building would be finished. City Manager Alvin Jackson said the building must be designed before a construction schedule can be issued. Based on Pozzuoli’s preliminary design, the building would be a one-level, L-shaped structure big on pediments, or triangular gables, and angular columns creating a portico-like walkway along the two front parts of the white building.
“Our team has designed and built numerous governmental and institutional facilities,” Collage’s proposal reads. (See it in full below.) “From City and community buildings to hurricane hardened and mission-critical installations, we bring the design and construction expertise and lessons learned to be of significant benefit to the City at every stage of project completion.”
The company included several public safety buildings as examples of its work (in Seagoville, Texas, Sumter County and Tavares, Fla.).