Lawsuit against contractor now likely over needed repairs to new Fire Station


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Almost two years after its completion, Burien’s brand new Fire Station still sits empty due to construction problems. Photo by Scott Schaefer.

Burien Fire Chief Mike Marrs.

by Ralph Nichols

The clock is ticking.

Almost two years after its completion, the Burien/Normandy Park Fire Department’s new headquarters station at 900 SW 146th Street near downtown Burien is still unoccupied.

And officials of Fire District No. 2 are beyond impatient.

A decision will be made “very soon” about filing a lawsuit against Bayley Construction of Mercer Island, the general contractor, Fire Chief Mike Marrs told The B-Town Blog.

Bayley refuses to fix major defects that prevent firefighters from using the station, including the five large fire engine bay doors, the roof, and exposed rebar in precast exterior masonry.

“We’re still trying to figure out if we would be better to file suit for breach of contract, or to have the repairs done and then sue them for the actual repair costs,” Marrs said.

Which option to take “is difficult question to ask. We still have lawyers researching that.”

Bayley has “not done anything in a year and a half to make us believe they are committed to fixing these problems. They offer to do some fixes but that comes with conditions and protests.”

Photo of a rebar problem near the rear northeast corner of the building.

While the district still continues “to work with them to get them to do the right thing and fix their work, we seemingly are no closer to having resolution,” Marrs said.

Although Mesa Precast built the precast components, they were a subcontractor and responsible to Bayley, not the fire district. This means “our fight is directly with Bailey,” he continued.

“It’s unfortunate that the contractor has backed us into this corner. It’s very costly to both sides. The people of the district need to get the building they paid for. This is not what they paid for.”

Bayley “didn’t present us with a completed building within the terms of the contract. They owe us $1,000 a day for not completing the work and not giving us beneficial use of the building.”

“We believe that we will prevail in our court case and as stewards of the citizens’ money recoup all of the taxpayers’ dollars for this project,” Marrs said.

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Comments

6 Responses to “Lawsuit against contractor now likely over needed repairs to new Fire Station”
  1. Jan says:

    It’s also unfortunate that they tore down the Funeral Chapel to build the new Fire Station. There are many buildings in Burien that would have been a better choice for removal. I wonder if other businesses or locations were even considered. It’s looking like location wasn’t the only questionable decision made with this project.

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    • Burienite says:

      The property owner (Bonney Wastson) WANTED to sell. They said as much is previous coverage of this project. It’s not like the fire department “took” the property from them!

      The choice to build the station at the Bonney Watson site was due to the fact that the City of Burien refused to work with the fire district on this project, and would not part ways with their cherished parking lot on 151st Street (across the street from the old Station 28). This is the parking lot that was labeled as “extremely important,” however NO ONE EVER PARKS THERE!

      So there is noting questionable about the site that was ultimately selected, and the issues with the contractor are because the contractor is in breach of the construction contract.

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      • TbC says:

        “NO ONE EVER PARKS THERE!”

        Not true. This week the Carnies that show up for the strawberry festival will camp there and leave a great amount of trash for us to pay to get rid of.

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  2. John Hendow says:

    By refusing to assume occupancy of the space, King County Fire District #2 is accruing a $1,000 per day fine against Bayley Construction. It’s been “almost two years” since completion, which represents a fine in the neighborhood of $700K. This is in addition to the estimated $1M cost for remediation of issues related to the doors, roof and exterior masonry.
    It would be nice to see this come to an acceptable resolution for both sides, as it’s disappointing to see this new facility sitting vacant for so long.

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  3. TbC says:

    SPAM!

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  4. Thanks for the headsup TbC – SPAM DESTROYED!

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