The number of contracting firms that have been preapproved to bid on projects for the state’s “cool schools” initiative has doubled from 18 to 36 companies, the Department of Education said today.
The bigger pool is expected to help attract more competitive bids after the DOE last month announced that initial proposals had come in over budget for projects at six schools. The high bids — in one case nearly 10 times the per-classroom estimate the department had been using — prompted the state to halt the awarding of bids.
The DOE today released the names of the 36 companies and said it is preparing to put the projects back out to bid.
“We appreciate the attention and effort by our local contractors who have come forward to work on our sustainable cooling projects,” Dann Carlson, assistant superintendent for school facilities and support services, said in a statement. “Cooling classrooms is much more than just installing an AC unit, it requires professional contractors who can complete a job the right way. This includes ensuring electrical capabilities, properly sealing rooms, and more.”
Using early industry estimates, the department had budgeted $40,000 as an “estimated median per classroom” cost to cover equipment and installation of air conditioners and other heat abatement measures. As recently as May, the DOE said it expected to complete a state initiative to cool 1,000 classrooms this year for roughly $45 million, with most schools receiving solar-powered air conditioners to offset energy use.
But procurement documents show the priciest per-classroom proposal came in at $360,770 to install solar-powered air conditioning in one portable classroom at Ewa Beach Elementary.
The 1,000 classrooms are spread across 33 schools deemed to be the hottest in the state. Consultants for the DOE analyzed those schools to come up with the design plans that contractors are bidding on. The DOE said the projects include a mix of products including photovoltaic (solar-powered) air conditioning, with both PV and electrical power; solar air conditioning with battery power; and standard split-system air conditioning with full electrical power.
In anticipation of state funding for the project, the DOE in March began prequalifying contractors. Of the more than 3,000 contractors that were notified, 18 firms qualified. In May, the DOE reopened the prequalifying process to attract more contractors; 18 more companies qualified.
The department says it will be meeting with the qualified contractors to review project specifications and the timeline for bidding.
The contractors from the first round are:
- A’s Mechanical
- Able Electric, Inc.
- All Maintenance and Repair, LLC
- Allied Pacific Builders, Inc.
- Arisumi Brothers, Inc.
- Banks Pacific Construction, Inc.
- CC Engineering & Construction, Inc.
- Contech Engineering, Inc.
- Economy Plumbing & Sheet Metal, Inc.
- Greenpath Technologies, Inc.
- Honolulu Roofing Company, Inc.
- Island Wide A/C Service, LLC
- MJ Construction, Inc.
- Pacific Blue Construction LLC
- Rambaud Electric, LLC
- S&M Sakamoto, Inc.
- Starcom Builders, Inc.
- Tory’s Roofing & Waterproofing, Inc.
The contractors from the second round are:
- Arita-Poulson General Contracting, LLC
- BCP Construction of HI, Inc.
- Brian’s Contracting, Inc.
- Central Construction, Inc.
- Commercial Roofing & Waterproofing Hawaii, Inc.
- Elite Pacific Construction, Inc.
- F&H Construction
- HBM Acquisitions, LLC dba Hawaiian Building Maintenance
- HSI Mechanical, Inc.
- Index Builders, Inc.
- Isemoto Contracting, Co., Ltd.
- LTM, Corporation dba Civil-Mechanical Contractor
- Nan, Inc.
- Performance Systems, Inc.
- Ralph S. Inouye Co., Ltd.
- RevoluSun, LLC
- Su-Mo Builders, Inc.
- Shioi Construction, Inc.