KOUNTZE COMMONS

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Kountze Commons: An initiative of Kountze Memorial Lutheran Church


 

Adult Forum Update, February 2017
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

Work continues on the new building. 75% of the structural concrete walls are in place. The remainder of the structural concrete walls will be completed this month. Pre-cast walls and structural steel framework for the second floor and roof structure will follow and be completed April 1. Temporary lighting will be installed at the northeast handicap/sanctuary entrance to improve visibility in the evenings.

Food Pantry, Clinic, and Church staff personnel continue to meet to determine the furniture, fixtures, and equipment needed for the new facility. Meetings to coordinate security and information technology systems are also ongoing with the staff.

Methodist Clinic minor renovation work on the second floor area is complete. Methodist is starting to install their equipment in the temporary clinic area in preparation of opening for business on February 23 and will operate Monday through Friday.

We are in the final stages of negotiating the agreement with Lutheran Family Services to occupy a portion of the lower level area. LFS will provide integrated health services with the Methodist Clinic.

West Parking Lot work will start in mid-March and be completed by mid-August. Alternate parking will be available at deFreese Manor and Barnhart Press’s gravel lot, as well as the new parking in front of the church.

Other Items of Interest

We have engaged Wiss, Janney, Elsner Associates, Inc. for the engineering of the repairs to the sanctuary structure. The design portion will take 16 weeks to complete after which we will receive proposals for the repairs and proceed with the work. Prior to proceeding with the structural repairs, the sanctuary skylight wooden framework will need to be repaired.

We continue to receive grants benefiting the Kountze Commons project and are in touch with other foundations for additional funding grants. To date, $1.3 million has been received.

 


 

Adult Forum Update, January 2017
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

Farnam St. Parking is complete and the meters are installed and active. Landscaping and lighting will be completed in the Spring. Kiewit will utilize their barricades to block off the non-paved areas. Sand must be used on the sidewalks and paving in lieu of ice melt due to the new concrete. Watch your step!

Work continues on the new building. Footings have been completed and structural concrete walls are being formed and poured. Structural concrete wall construction will continue through January and be completed the first part of February. Pre-cast walls and structural steel framework will follow and be completed April 1. Below grade plumbing will be deferred until next spring when the subgrade is thawed out.

Food Pantry, Clinic, and Church staff personnel have been and will be meeting to determine the furniture, fixtures, and equipment needed for the new facility. Last week, volunteers moved office furniture donated by Wiese Research from their facility to temporary storage at All Makes Office Equipment to be used in Kountze Commons. Thanks to Dr. Jerry Fischer for obtaining this donation, Joyce Palmer for coordinating the operation and good neighbor All Makes for storing it until the project is complete.

Methodist Clinic minor renovation work has started on the second floor clinic area. The work will be completed the first week in February. Methodist will start occupying the area February 15 and open for business at the end of February.

Lutheran Family Services will be a tenant in the lower level. Discussion and negotiation of lease agreement is in its final stages and continues (in the hands of the lawyers). LFS will provide integrated health services with the Methodist Clinic. The design plan for the LFS offices has been prepared by Holland Basham Architects. The cost for the tenant finishes will be paid for by LFS.

West Parking Lot work will start in the spring of 2017 and be completed by mid-August.

Other Items of Interest

A plan of action will be developed and executed to address the structural issues above the Sanctuary after receipt of the engineer’s report which will contain an outline for structural modifications.

The modifications will be done in the sanctuary attic area, which should not affect the aesthetics of the sanctuary.

We continue to receive grants and are in touch with other foundations for additional funding grants in support of the Kountze Commons project.

 


 

Adult Forum Update, December 2016
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

Farnam St. Parking is complete except for light pole installation. Bases were installed this past week by OPPD. Sod will be installed next spring due to weather. Kiewit is working with their electrical subcontractor to install temporary lighting to light up the sanctuary front entrance until completion of the west parking lot.

The church sign has been placed in its permanent location

Work has started on the building. Presently, footings are being installed and concrete walls will start being installed shortly. Underground plumbing installation will start within the month. The Kountze Commons is still on track for completion by mid-August 2017.

Methodist will utilize the existing church clinic area Monday through Friday starting mid-February to mid-August. Some minor modifications to the existing clinic space will be made after the Christmas holidays to accommodate the Methodist Clinic. Cost proposals will be received within the week for this work. The Methodist Clinic is scheduled to be turned over to Methodist by mid-August.

Lutheran Family Services will be a tenant in the lower level. Discussion and negotiation of lease agreement is in its final stages and hopefully will be finalized next week. LFS will provide integrated health services with the Methodist Clinic. Design plans for the LFS offices are being finalized by Holland Basham Architects.

West Parking Lot work will start in the spring of 2017 and be completed by mid-August.

In addition to the $1 million grant previously awarded, we have received over $250,000 in additional grants from local foundations in support of the Kountze Commons project.

Other Items of Interest

The temporary concrete patch has been installed in the lower west parking lot.

The exterior caulking has been completed. The west exterior stone has been waterproofed. The remaining areas to be waterproofed will be completed weather permitting or next spring.

The preliminary and final inspection of the church structure by the structural engineer from Chicago has been completed and a report has just been submitted to the church detailing corrective measures to be taken. Review of the report and a plan of action will be developed and executed.

 


 

Adult Forum Update, November 2016
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

The Board has approved the entire project as originally planned, which includes the building, link/garden, and west parking lot. Geopiers are completed. Building foundation work will start soon. Work will start on the rest of the building immediately. The revised building permit has been approved by the City of Omaha. The Kountze Commons is scheduled for completion by mid-August 2017.

The Methodist Clinic is scheduled to be turned over to Methodist by mid-August. Methodist will utilize the existing church clinic area Monday through Friday starting mid-February to mid-August. Some minor modifications to the existing clinic space will be made after the Christmas holidays to accommodate the Methodist Clinic.

Lutheran Family Services will be a tenant in the lower level. LFS will provide integrated health services with the Methodist Clinic. Design plans for the LFS offices are being finalized by Holland Basham Architects. The cost for the tenant finishes will be paid for by LFS.

The first phase of the Farnam St. parking will be completed at the end of November. The second phase will be completed in conjunction with the west parking lot work next spring. The church sign has been temporarily relocated to the front yard of the church.

West Parking Lot work will start in the spring of 2017 and be completed by mid-August. The street vacations to the church have been finalized by the City of Omaha.

Kountze Memorial has also received a $1 million grant from a major local foundation for the Kountze Commons project.

Other Items of Interest

A temporary concrete patch will be installed starting late next week.

We still plan to have the South and West exterior stone wall joints east of the Sanctuary reworked (tuck pointed) yet this fall.

There has been a preliminary inspection of the church structure by the structural engineer from Chicago and further examination and study will continue. A report will be available in the next 30 days for developing a plan of action to correct the problem.

 


 

Adult Forum Update, October 2016
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

The surcharge (dirt pile) is complete and will be removed shortly. Geopiers foundations will start after surcharge materials are removed and final building excavation is completed.

Kiewit has received revised subcontractor proposals this week and will provide results next week for the Boards consideration and action. Based on the costs and Project funding, the Board will decide on including the West Parking and Link at the end of this month.

The revised Building Permit that was resubmitted to the city has not been issued as of this time. Farnam St. parking has not proceeded as we have to meet with the City this Tuesday to get their approval of the transition area between the new parking and the existing 27th street intersection. The street vacations should be finalized in the next two weeks.

Methodist’s temporary clinic has been finalized. Modification work will start after the Christmas Holidays. They will occupy the churches free clinic area from mid February through August 2017 when they will then move into their clinic in the new facility.

Lutheran Family Service negotiations are progressing with the integration of their behavioral health care personnel directly integrated with the Methodist Clinic.

We should be able to advise the Congregation what the final scope of the Project will be at our November Forum Project Update.

Other Items of Interest

A temporary concrete patch will be provided in the West parking lot drive that has deteriorated when the Farnam St. parking is installed.

The South and West exterior stone wall joints East of the Sanctuary will be reworked ( tuck pointed) and windows re-caulked yet this Fall.  Hopefully this will resolve the water leaks we are experiencing.

We are investigating structural movement of the Sanctuary roof structure that has caused movement of the wall between the annex and sanctuary where the movable wall is located. We have a local structural engineering firm involved with determining the cause and fix of the problem as well as a wood structural engineering firm from Chicago involved that specializes in large wood structures.

 


 

Adult Forum Update, September 2016
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

Project is proceeding with preliminary subcontract work:

  • Site excavation & Surcharge work (4 to 6 Weeks to complete)
  • Procurement of materials that take time to acquire
  • Foundation Pier design and installation

Farnam St. parking will start in two weeks and complete in four weeks. Exterior Building & Lead Glass window LED lighting will be included in the Project at the Main Entrance of the Church and Bell Tower.

Initial Building Permit was issued, however the revised project plans had to be resubmitted for approval by the City. This will take about three weeks to receive the Revised Building Permit. This will not delay work on Farnam St or the building construction as the Surcharge work will not be completed until the second week in October and Foundation work will not start until the removal of the Surcharge.

The vacation of 27th St. the alley, and 27th Ave. is in process and should be finalized and deeded over to the church at the end of October by the City.

Kiewit is rebidding and negotiating with subcontractors and material suppliers to hopefully reduce the Project costs. A decision will be made by the Board at the end of October on the final scope of the Project. i.e. if the Link and West Parking Lot will be included in this phase of the Project.

Methodist Clinic is committed to the Project and understands that the Project completion will be next July or mid August 2017.

  • Kountze has offered and they have accepted the temporary use of our Free Clinic area for their clinic to operate during the week from February thru the completion of their space in the new facility. This is because they will lose their space with the Salvation Army as that building is being torn down

Kountze Endowment True Vision is in negotiations with Lutheran Family Services to occupy the lower level unfinished area.

As stated above, the Project is now scheduled for completion at the end of July or mid-August 2017.

 


 

Kountze Commons Happenings, July/August 2016
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the property

Demolition of the KETV building is complete. The building site is being graded and prepared for the new building foundation installation. Final drawings and specifications from Holland Basham Architects have been completed and released to Kiewit to advertise and receive competitively bid proposals from subcontractors. Award of subcontractor work will be completed and work will begin shortly

New parking work along Farnam St. in front of the church is scheduled to begin next month. Additionally, the Gingko tree in front of the church will remain in place and the stone sign will be relocated to a new location in front of the church.

The Building Committee reviewed an exterior light demonstration of the main entrance to the church, bell tower and lead glass windows above the main church entrance with state of-the art LED lighting which was most impressive. We will be receiving an alternate price to provide this lighting to consider incorporating this option to the church with the new parking work along Farnam Street.

The Healing Gift Free Clinic and the KMLC Pantry would like to thank the Lozier Foundation for their generous support. The Foundation has given a $10,000 grant to the operating expense of the Clinic and donated shelving for both the pantry and the Clinic. We are grateful for our community partners!

 


 

Adult Forum Update, June 5 Groundbreaking, June 19
by Paul Sum, Owner’s Representative for the Property

Visible signs of construction are happening! Utility relocation work has begun, asbestos abatement has been completed, and Kiewit construction has mobilized on the job site.

On Monday, May 16, the first bricks from the south wall of the building came down, and the demolition is now officially underway. As you notice, there are barriers around the site, and we ask that all congregational members, friends and neighbors stay clear of the construction area.

Flagging has been installed along Farnam Street, indicating the new parking and sidewalk which will be installed. The first row of flags depicts the new diagonal parking curb line and the flags closest to the church show the north edge of the new sidewalk. The stone church sign will be relocated to a new location in front of the church.

Currently, there is a large pile of dirt on the north side of the lower west parking lot. We were able to secure this needed dirt for the new parking lot from another Kiewit project at a very low cost. The dirt pile will remain until we start the new parking lot construction in August.

After the KETV demolition is complete, there will be a ground breaking ceremony, now scheduled during the Adult Forum time, 10:10 AM on Sunday, June 19.

We have a solid team made up of church members in the design, construction and management of this new facility. In addition, the Food Pantry and Health Clinic personnel have been involved and consulted in the design of the facility, as have members of our staff.

Please join us for an update on the latest plans and a progress report at the Adult Forum on Sunday, June 5 at 10:10 AM in the Fellowship Hall. Our architect, Tim Holland, and other leaders, will be leading this informational meeting. This meeting will be livestreamed. You may access it through our website.

Financing of this project is provided by the Mission Investment Fund of the ELCA: http://www.mif.elca.org/