The city of Spokane Parks and Recreation Department is more than $250,000 over budget on the demolition of the old YMCA building in Riverfront Park. But the department thinks it can find almost $150,000 in savings.
More than $100,000 of the cost overruns on demolition is a result of having more asbestos than expected in the 1965 building. Parks Director Leroy Eadie said the YMCA had conducted an asbestos analysis of the building before selling it, but that estimate turned out to be “pretty grossly inadequate.”
The substance, which must be handled as a hazardous material because it can cause significant lung damage, was wrapped around many pipes and vents hidden from view.
The original estimate for demolishing the building and restoring the site, made by architect and former Park Board member Steve McNutt, was $1.3 million, but that assumed an average amount of asbestos in the building, Eadie said. Other than the asbestos, the demolition estimate was “largely accurate,” he added.
Other unexpected costs involved oil, possibly from the parking lot that was on the property before the building, and routing the stream that flowed through the property.
The department will save some money on restoration by cutting down the number of basalt columns, benches and bike racks, using free fill dirt and not importing topsoil.
Restoration will start soon, and is scheduled to be complete in October.