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Letter to Editor: Mistakes indicate lack of experience

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I found the article, “Are Construction Projects Costing Too Much,” (Herald, 8/16) confusing and troubling.   One of the causes for change orders mentioned was “unsuitable soils” that were discovered after the bids were approved.   These were found in reconstruction projects, which means that when the roads were originally built, they knew the soil conditions at that time, so why wasn’t that still on the record? Unknown shallow utilities in older parts of Rocklin were another reason mentioned for cost overruns on street projects. Why doesn’t the city know about these and why isn’t it checked before the bids are awarded? The city engineers know what kind of soil we have in this area and should be factoring this in when accepting bids for projects. In the case of the Rocklin Event Center windows, anyone who has been there, especially the council, knows the sun sets in that direction and the room gets very warm. The Planning Commission should have required some kind of sun mitigation when looking at the design before the project was approved. These kinds of mistakes indicate a lack of experience or professionalism but, hopefully not, a desire on the part of the city to award projects to favored contractors with low bids, knowing there may have to be a change order later that will raise the cost to what the other losing bids might have been.   Janet Dunlap, Rocklin