City Council approves a $900k agreement with Gruen Associates
Written by VINCENT WEI / Published October 28, 2011 (ONLINE ONLY)
The City Council on Tuesday approved a consultant services agreement with architectural and engineering firm Gruen Associates.
Gruen Associates will be tasked with the design phase, or the second phase, of the Rosemead Boulevard Improvement Project.
While the agreement with the firm is valued at $907,833, no general funds from the City are being used.
“At this point, there are no general funds from the city that are going to be used for this project,” Councilmember Carl Blum said during the December 21, 2010 city council meeting.
The City intends to use monies from grants, the federal stimulus, as well as previously allocated monies for the Project.
Councilmember Vincent Yu added, “Not only is there no general fund dollars used for the Project, a lot of funding that we have for the Project will be lost if we don’t use them.”
“We need to hit certain deadlines and meet certain guidelines,” he also said.
Gruen Associates was selected among five firms interviewed by the Rosemead Boulevard ad hoc committee. Councilmembers Blum and Yu serve on the ad hoc committee.
The Project was conceived after the City acquired Rosemead Boulevard, also known as Highway 19, from the state of California in 2008. This year, Councilmember Blum asked the City to develop a project to improve the heavily trafficked road.
The City plans to introduce various improvements to the city street, which include energy efficient lighting, pedestrian-friendly enhancements, drought landscapes, and public art. Councilmembers Blum and Vizcarra are in the process of forming a public arts advisory committee to discuss how art may be incorporated with the Project.
“We feel quite strongly that if we want to improve this city…we have to start upgrading some of the features,” Blum said.
Earlier this year, the City named Vanir Construction Management as the project manager. Gruen Associates will design the Project, while Vanir will evaluate, re-design, and bid for the actual construction of the Project.
In total, the Project intends to upgrade two miles of Temple City’s roads along the western boundaries of the City.
“It’s a win-win without using our own money,” Mayor Fernando Vizcarra commented.