Sinks Canyon student housing project could find new life

Oct 3, 2013 By Katie Roenigk, Staff Writer

Administrators at Central Wyoming College have a new plan for moving forward with a student housing project in Sinks Canyon.

The undertaking was stalled this spring when bids for construction near Lander came in almost $400,000 higher than anticipated, mostly because of complications with utilities in the rural location. Since then, administrators have revised the project to incorporate bunk houses instead of apartments.

The bunk houses will not be equipped with restrooms but rather will be built around one common shower and bathroom facility that already exists at the site.

"So we don't have (to build) the infrastructure," said Ron Granger, CWC's vice president for administrative services.

He added that a laundry facility will have to be constructed as part of the project, as well as a fire suppression system in the property's main building.

In the end, Granger said, there should be 24 extra beds available for students wanting to stay in Sinks Canyon while attending school at CWC. The six existing cabins will be upgraded as well, he continued, with new roofs installed along with monitoring systems to detect smoke or carbon monoxide.

"This plan would give us a minimum of 36 beds and a maximum of 42 beds for our students," Granger said.

In total, he said, the revised project should cost up to $900,000, with $55,000 budgeted for the cabin remodels; $45,000 for the furniture, fixtures and equipment; $90,000 for architecture and engineering; $667,000 for the bunkhouse and orchard house construction; and $43,000 for owner contingency costs.

Roughly $2.1 million was budgeted for the initial plan.

Granger recommended hiring SDI General Contractors of Lander to manage the job. He said that group oversaw construction of the current shower and bath house on CWC's property in Sinks Canyon, and SDI was the low bidder on the original housing project.

The board approved hiring SDI upon the condition that the guaranteed maximum price for the project would not exceed $900,000.

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