PTCPD moisture problems unresolved

Thu, 06/07/2007 - 5:08pm
By: John Munford

City waiting on consultant report for suggested fix, estimate

Ongoing problems with moisture infiltrating Peachtree City’s police headquarters are still unresolved.

But the city is still working on the issue, said City Spokesperson Betsy Tyler. The city currently is waiting for reports from the consulting firm that has been working on the project, Tyler said Monday afternoon.

The consultant has undertaken a concrete analysis of the flooring and foundation, and a design process is underway for the flooring system and the heating ventilation and cooling system to fix the problems, Tyler said. The analysis included some core sampling of the foundation, she added.

The city set aside $300,000 in this year’s budget for repairs to the building to fix the moisture problem. There is still no approximate estimate available for the actual cost of the repairs, however, because the design has not been completed, Tyler said.

The recurring mildew problem has required regular cleaning of the department, said Police Chief James Murray. But the recent drought has tempered some of the moisture problems, at least on a temporary basis, he said.

“When we get a lot of rain it gets a whole lot worse,” Murray said.

An air quality study in August of last year found that “fungal particulate” was measured at levels lower than or comparable to that found in outside air.

The moisture has caused multiple problems with the building, including the bubbling of carpet adhesive, damp drywall and warped wood fixtures. In one room, a number of law books had to be thrown out because they were so overcome by mold, and others had to be meticulously cleaned.

The moisture problem has gotten progressively worse since the station opened in 2001, Murray said.

Eagle Indoor Air, which conducted the air quality study, noted that the humidity inside the building is high, topping out at 80 percent in one room where it should be between 35 and 50 percent ideally. The report surmised that groundwater was seeping into the building somehow.

The $1.8 million station opened in 2001 on a tract of land formerly used as a landfill adjacent to the city’s original wastewater treatment plant off Ga. Highway 74 south of Kelly Drive. Former and current city officials have said the building was not constructed on top of a dump area.

The contractor on the project was Leslie Contracting of Fayetteville and the engineering firm responsible for design was Don Cobb and Associates. Leslie Contracting reimbursed the city for related problems including soil samples, waterproofing and the purchase of two dehumidifiers, according to a September 2004 letter provided by the city.

The 5.5-acre site was purchased in 1999 for $140,000 from Pathway Communities. At the time, an environmental survey of the tract showed there were no contaminants present in soil samples taken from the site.

Last year the City Council approved spending $20,000 for an engineering firm to investigate the problem with tests to determine groundwater levels and soil conditions from drill borings between 10 and 20 feet deep, and monitoring results from 11 temporary groundwater wells on the site.

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