After careful review following a two-month delay caused by an unwarranted bid protest in the Kehler Stadium renovation project, the Westfield Public School District announced on July 19 that construction on the stadium will begin next spring.
“While there was no easy solution to address the delay caused by this unnecessary and frustrating bid complaint, we feel this decision to hold off construction on Kehler Stadium until spring of 2019 is the least disruptive option to our sports programs and other activities,” said Business Administrator Dana Sullivan.
Sullivan said consultations were held with the vendor, Your Way Construction, Inc., and high school administrators at which a number of considerations were discussed, including the various events and activities held during the school year at the stadium, the fall and spring sports seasons, and whether viable options exist for moving a sport or activity/event to a different venue during construction.
“We will continue to work with our coaches to try to minimize disruption and address concerns,” said Superintendent Dr. Margaret Dolan. “We appreciate the community’s ongoing patience throughout the Kehler renovation project.”
Work on Kehler Stadium to replace the turf field, track, blacktop, bleachers and to renovate the bathrooms had been scheduled to begin in early May after the contract was awarded to the lowest responsible bidder, Your Way Construction, Inc. of Irvington. The Board approved the Kehler contract on March 19.
H & S Construction and Mechanical, Inc. of Elizabeth, the third lowest bidder in the process, filed a bid protest that was denied on April 13 by the Honorable Karen M. Cassidy who presided over the complaint proceedings in the Superior Court of the County of Union.
On April 16, H & S Construction and Mechanical filed an appeal, which was heard on June 7 by the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey. The appellate division denied the complaint on July 5.