The cost and design development for Wrangell’s new hospital facility was the focus of Monday’s joint meeting between City and Hospital officials. Facilitating the meeting was Program Manager Steve Rutland, with American Health Facilities Management.

Rutland says at this time the construction team is reviewing the design of the structures roof.

“We were talking about the possibility of a low slope roof design, or the gabled roof design, a design selection will be made after a pricing presentation at the end of January,” he says.

The construction team for the project consists of Architect, Julie Covington, Construction Manager Bob McGuire, Engineer Trevor Sande and Program Manager Steve Rutland.

Rutland says the team is looking at the pros and cons of both design options, and which design will be best for the rainforest climate and be most cost effective in the long run.

“We have some challenges to overcome. The project had been on hold for over a year, so there have been some pricing escalations and so forth. We are going to work through those and come back with some recommendations,” he says.

With a price tag of an estimated $29 million, the group is looking into cost saving options. At Tuesday’s Borough Assembly Meeting City Manager Timothy Rooney and the Assembly moved to re-vise the utility plan, which the team believes can save up to $500,000. The City expects the new plan to be out for bid by the end of next week. Rooney says the budget is a major concern, and finding ways to save money is a priority.

“We have a very definitive budget, so certainly I have concerns. However there has not been much movement in interest rates and I think it’s still relatively a slow construction market. I’m hopeful with some additional budget crunching we can where we need to be,” he says.

The hospital construction team hopes to have the budget finalized by the end of January, as well as a recommendation on roof design.