2017-08-11 / Front Page

Park district eyes December move-in

Renovations underway at new headquarters
By Hector Gonzalez

FUTURE HOME—Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District will soon move its main offices into this building at 4201 Guardian St. 
ACORN FILE PHOTO FUTURE HOME—Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District will soon move its main offices into this building at 4201 Guardian St. ACORN FILE PHOTO Despite a clerical snafu that pushed back the project’s completion date by two months, Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District officials plan to finish renovating their new headquarters by the end of this year.

At their Aug. 3 meeting, RSRPD board members unanimously authorized a $698,120 contract with Glendale-based Monet Construction Inc. to refurbish the interior of the building at 4201 Guardian St. In addition, the board authorized $19,800 to replace and dispose of all old carpeting in the building, bringing the total contract award to $717,920, plus 10 percent for contingencies. The improvements comprise phase two of the renovation project.

The park district bought the 82,000-square-foot Guardian Street building and its 7.1-acre parcel in the Peppertree Business Park in eastern Simi Valley for $8.6 million in June 2015.

Plans call for completely repurposing the interior of the building, including adding 14 new office spaces, a lunchroom and two employee recreation rooms, as well as installing new wiring and upgrading the building’s fire sprinkler system.

Monet Construction also will convert an old kitchen into a multipurpose boardroom and install sliding glass doors around an existing atrium area.

“We’re putting in operable partitions so we can be able to isolate (the atrium) off and rent it to the general public for community meetings, those sorts of things,” said Wayne Nakaoka, RSRPD’s director of planning and maintenance.

Most of the funding for phase two was earmarked in the district’s 2017-18 budget— around $450,000 from the general fund, with an additional $300,000 coming from a capital outlay fund. A shortfall of $39,700 will be made up from money taken from a dividend account, according to a staff report. That total includes the 10 percent for construction contingencies.

Last week’s vote to hire Monet originally was scheduled for the board’s July 20 meeting. But planning and maintenance staff requested the contract be pulled from that evening’s agenda when they learned that the project’s paperwork had inadvertently been left out of board members’ agenda packets, Nakaoka said.

California law requires that agenda items listed for discussion in open meetings be made public within 72 hours of the meeting, including to boards of directors.

“What happened was the duplication people forgot to include (the contract) in the board’s (agenda) packet. They didn’t have it,” Nakaoka said. “The administration was notified and the general public was notified, but the board wasn’t notified.”

As a result, officials had to delay the start date for the work from July to early September and change the completion date from October to the end of December, he said.

Timelines for completing and submitting construction plans to the city for permit approvals also were adjusted.

Monet Construction will have barely four months to complete the work, but finishing the project within that short time frame is not a problem for the company, said Jenny Martinez, administrative assistant for Monet.

“If the job has a set time frame—yes, we will meet that set time frame,” she said.

If all goes as planned, park district officials hope to begin moving into the new headquarters by the end of December.

In December 2015, the district sold its 13.2-acre headquarters at 1692 Sycamore Drive, a patchwork of buildings in a converted condominium project, for $24 million. The Ventura County Area Housing Authority, which bought the property, is planning to build 370 one- and two-bedroom affordable apartments on the site.

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