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Company has experience with building jails

Staff writer

Another construction management company threw its name in the hat for consideration if the county moves forward with a new jail facility.

Dennis Kerschen and Bill Reynolds Representatives of the Law Company, Inc. of Wichita told Marion County Commission Monday that they have had experience with construction of correctional facilities.

Kerschen said he found out about the project from Law Kingdon, Inc., the architect firm that is assisting the county with the design of the proposed jail.

The company was established in 1959, and has completed projects throughout the country that range from $1 million to $70 million.

Among their services are pre-construction and estimating to help control project budgets. Kerschen explained that a wish list is made and the company can assist the county in determining needs, providing the best combination to maximize dollars.

As construction managers, Kerschen said correctional work is a specialized field. In addition to new jail projects, the firm also has completed renovations and additions to correctional facilities that include Sedgwick County Jail, El Dorado Correctional Facility, and Finney County Law Enforcement Center.

Kerschen said his company was more comfortable as construction manager at-risk, stating the county would get more for its money when the construction manager has a monetary interest in the project.

Construction manager at-risk is when the management company will pay any construction overages in the project budget that weren’t properly estimated.

The typical cost for a CM at-risk is one-half percent of the total construction cost. The fee also includes pre-construction services.

When asked about fixtures, furniture, and equipment, Kerschen said typically they only do the building but could include cost estimates for furnishings.

Last modified July 31, 2008

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