What to do with the RMI capital building is back on the government’s agenda three years after all workers abandoned the four-story facility for replacement offices.
The engineering firm Beca has won the bid to develop three options for the government to consider, said William Reiher, who heads Public Works’ Project Management Unit that oversees all RMI government construction.
The $130,000 contract calls for Beca to deliver a plan with three feasible options: renovate the entire building, carry out a partial renovation, or a complete demolition of the existing building and build from scratch.
This review is to be completed in 45 days, said Reiher. It will go to Cabinet for a decision on which option to pursue.
Once an option is selected by leaders, “the next step is a detailed design for construction work,” Reiher said.
Problems with the capital building were first pointed out by Beca in a 2004 report, and Leo A. Daly engineers issued a detailed report on the status of the capital building in 2013. It was vacated soon after this report was issued.
“The fact that there has not been any organized preventive maintenance program has accelerated the deterioration of the structure and supporting building systems,” the Daly report said in 2013.
The Daly engineering team said its findings on the status of the building can be “broadly classified into five major categories — water damage issues, fire protection issues, building code issues, maintenance issues, and age of the facility. They are all very closely related, impact each other, and cannot be fully addressed independently.”
Read more about this in the July 21, 2017 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.