CENTERVILLE -- With the outside of the Whitaker Home restored, work now begins to renovate the interior.
"We are really looking forward to this being open to the public again," said Councilman Paul Cutler. "Part of our mission is to preserve the past and recognize and respect our heritage. This house gives us a connection to the past."
The Whitaker Museum is an old home that showcases the pioneer heritage and past.
Cutler said it's a great chance for elementary students to see what a pioneer home looked like. Cutler said this project started as a small repair and turned into a long process to update the home and make it safer.
More than a year ago, the exterior of the home was renovated to a more historic appearance. Even with that work successfully done, officials say there is much more work to do inside before the building can be occupied again.
The city has a budget including about $67,000 for renovations. These funds include about $17,000 in carry-over funds from the Whitaker Trust Fund last fiscal year and an additional council- approved allotment of $50,000 in the new budget.
Recently, staff solicited bids from various contractors for work with carpentry; heating, ventilation and air conditioning; plumbing; and electrical. Staff decided on plans and specifications for the work, and the council authorized using up to $60,000 for the scope of work.
There were 13 bids submitted, with three in each area except carpentry, which had four bids.
Bids were approved for Cook Construction for carpentry for a base bid of $29,000, with an optional amount of $4,240 for tongue and groove flooring, Custom Mechanical for heating, ventilation and air conditioning work for $5,610, Kevin Barkdull Plumbing for $4,450, and Alder Electric for $9,477.
This brings the base bid to $48,537, leaving room for change orders, which could include the optional flooring.
With the extra money, there is adequate funding for contingencies, according to a staff report. It states there are always a number of unknown conditions encountered, which is why they wanted funds above the bid amounts.
Staff will not decide if the tongue and groove flooring will be used until construction begins.
They can assess whether there is enough money left after considering all the change orders.
Public Works Director Randy Randall will serve as the project superintendent and general contractor to direct and coordinate the work of the four subcontractors.
When this work is completed, staff says the museum can reopen to the public next spring. Work is expected to be finished by April.
"We're hoping these revisions and improvements will last a long time," Cutler said. "We want to go many years without any additional costs."