Douglas County pares down commission agenda, plans to select construction manager for crisis center

photo by: Chris Conde

The Douglas County Courthouse is pictured in September 2018.

The Douglas County Commission will hold a pared-down meeting Wednesday after deferring several items originally scheduled to be taken up this week.

One item that remains, however, is the commission’s consideration of selecting a construction manager at risk for its proposed behavioral health crisis center at the Treatment and Recovery Campus of Douglas County, part of which is currently under construction in the 1000 block of West Second Street.

The other items for consideration in the meeting’s regular agenda and a planned work session have either been canceled or deferred because of the coronavirus pandemic, Douglas County spokeswoman Karrey Britt said.

“We will try to keep the commission meeting brief amid the COVID-19 pandemic,” Britt said.

As for the construction manager at risk item, the county received several bids from construction companies to serve the position. Of those bids, an evaluation committee recommended to the commissioners that Mar Lan Construction would be the best choice, according to a memo to the commissioners. Other companies that submitted a bid, which the committee ranked for consideration, include McCown Gordon, Turner Construction and StructSure.

The commission voted in February 2019 to use the construction manager at risk method, or CMR, instead of the traditional design-bid-build method, for the behavioral health campus.

With the CMR method, the county contracts with one construction manager who manages all subcontractors and provides a guaranteed maximum price for a project. County Administrator Sarah Plinsky previously said that the method could increase the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the projects.

If approved, Mar Lan Construction would receive $20,000 to provide pre-construction services. Once pre-construction services are completed, Mar Lan will work to provide a guaranteed maximum price for the project to the commission.

Plinsky told the Journal-World in February that the county did not yet have a cost estimate for the construction of the facility. She said at the time that the county would look to hire a construction manager for the project, which will help define the cost.

Douglas County officials previously said they expect the 20,000-square-foot facility to be constructed by the end of 2021. The county began construction on the housing portion of the campus in November 2019.

The County Commission will meet 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the county courthouse, 1100 Massachusetts St. Full agendas are available online at

Related coverage:

• Feb. 16, 2020 — Health leaders provide updated facility design for planned Douglas County behavioral health crisis center

• Dec. 22, 2020 — State funding for behavioral health crisis center is top legislative priority for Douglas County

• Nov. 10, 2020 — Construction of behavioral health campus set to begin, but price tag for Douglas County may grow

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