Rejecting a suggestion from Ward 3 Councillor Matthew Shoemaker that the job should be tendered, City Council has agreed to retain EPOH Inc. as prime consultant on construction of a 144-crypt mausoleum expansion at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery.
Roger Renonen, the city's cemeteries manager, proposed that the contract for planning and tendering the construction be sole-sourced for $74,000 to EPOH Inc., because that firm has expertise and experience with local cemetery mausolea, "having been the consultant....dating back to 1983 when the first mausoleum was built."
"They designed the master plan, They have been the architect that has designed every mausoleum all the way through. We don' t believe we have any reason to go to another architect," Larry Girardi, the city's public works commissioner, told city councillors at a meeting last week.
But Councillor Shoemaker countered: "I would want staff to be authorized to request tenders for the planning, registration and tendering of the construction."
Councillor Marchy Bruni didn't like Shoemaker's idea.
"It's already been anticipated that the cost will be $74,000, Bruni said. "So now the price is out there. How fair is that? I don't think that's proper business."
Council voted 8-4 to sole-source the job to EPOH.
The mausoleum expansion is expected to cost $834,000 for a stand-alone structure containing 64 single crypts, 32 companion crypts and eight tandem crypts.
The city's mausoleum master plan foresees between eight and 10 additional mausoleums at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, depending on demand.
The project will be funded from the city's cemeteries reserve.
For reasons that Commissioner Girardi suspects may have to do with the large number of Italians in the Sault, mausoleum crypts are surprisingly popular here.
The city sells an average of 18 crypts a year and the current inventory is expected to run out by late 2015.
Construction is expected to take 28 to 36 weeks.
(IMAGE: Flower still life, 1614, by Ambrosius Bosschaert (1573–1621).