Grand Forks Growth Fund approves change orders to Tech Accelerator budget – Grand Forks Herald

GRAND FORKS — The Grand Forks Growth Fund Committee voted to approve change orders to the technology and security budget of the Tech Accelerator.

High Point Networks will continue on as tech contractor for the Tech Accelerator project, and it will present a set monetary value for the change orders before the next Jobs Development Authority meeting April 4.

“You can really see the steel studs are up, and it’s starting to take shape in terms of what it’s going to look like, so it’s easy to envision,” Keith Lund, president and CEO of the Grand Forks Region Economic Development Corporation, said to the committee. “So, we appreciate the investment and all the time that you’re spending on it.”

The committee received an update on the progress of the project, which is in the Herald building and will wrap up construction in September and is in need of technology equipment, which will be ordered soon. The project is estimated to cost about $3 million, with about $1.46 million in awarded construction contract; just under the original $2 million estimate.

“We’re looking at some change orders to add back items that were scaled back to meet that projected budget,” Community Development Director Meredith Richards said. “So we think those will be in the ($350,000) to $400,000 range. That is reflected in this kind of updated budget. We show that under construction as change orders of $400,000. Again, that’s just a placeholder. Those specific requests will come to this committee, and we think that’ll happen next month.”

Richards said the original budget for technology and security was $500,000. The quote she has now is at $560,000, which is broken down into roughly $120,000 for network equipment within the building, including the addition of Rackspace support, which provides cloud computing services, network switches, surveillance cameras, access control on doors and more, and the other $440,000 or so is going to adding video cameras, commercial grade televisions and more to board rooms, breakout spaces and the community room.

Richards provided a general update to the committee on the project’s construction, she said things are shaping up according to plan.

“What I’m trying to say in my clunky way is we’re in good shape on the budget,” Richards said. “(There’s) more to come, and it will be coming pretty quickly, because things are moving. There’s a lot of demo (that has) been done. That looks fantastic, and we’re looking at wrapping it up in September.”