1) What is the date of RFP submittal?
Proposals are due January 15, 2018.
2) Why is the water source for the pond envisioned to be a well when there is a stream nearby?
It was previously determined on a visit by the Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District to the the Garden garden site, that the stream water could not be used for irrigation, diversion for filling a pond or creating a waterfall using the stream water.
3) In the RFP, please clarify the following: page 3 of 8 – Section B.7 – Who is the “Offeror?” (We are pretty sure that means us, but want to confirm).
4) Page 4 of 8 – Section C.5 states that “(This RFP excludes architectural/structural design of the pond or Visitors Education Center and pond.)” In the Q&A session, we were told that the Visitor Center and pond would be in the RFP’s scope. Please clarify.
We would like pricing to include these items but are only contracting services for the Schematic Phase Design at this time.
5) Page 5 of 8 – Section D.4 – Are you asking for a business plan or just a narrative based on rules of them to generally define how many staff should be added to operate the Garden?
6) Has there been a discussion with local professionals, particularly architects and civil engineers, to adopt a non-exclusivity policy as national firms seek collaboration with local team members?
Not at this time.
7) What is the estimate total budget of the project?
The budget is open based on designs and the appetite of the community.
8) Should an Architect be included on the team?
Detailed design is not needed at this time, but is part of the next design and development phase so should be priced into that phase.
9) What are the total fees allocated for the schematic design phase?
Total Fees are open.
10) Is there a project construction budget (or budget goal for construction and planting)?
As is with the complete budget, the construction and planting budget are open.
11) “Attend… all necessary meetings during all phases of the design process.” What are all necessary meetings?
We have noted 3 stakeholder meetings. In addition, you should assume at least 2-3 board meetings and a final presentation meeting in this phase.
12) Fee proposal for overall scope of the entire project – Schematic Design, Design Development, Construction Documents or just the first phase, Schematic Design?
Please provide the cost for all phases. We will only be awarding the schematic design phase at this time.
13) SD includes three preliminary site designs – are each of these to have a budget cost estimate?
Yes, at a high level. The estimate should be accurate enough for the Garden to make a final decision.
14) Are the 8.5 acres of Botanical Garden of the Piedmont expected to be constructed in one phase or multiple phases?
Ideally the garden is expected to be constructed in one phase, but that decision will be made as we enter the construction design phase.
15) Will the greater-Charlottesville community be engaged in the schematic design process, or only select stakeholders?
We anticipate all outreach to the community by way of survey tool. Decisions will be made by more select stakeholders.
16) Are interviews anticipated to be a component of the selection process?
Yes, interviews can be either made in person or by phone/Skype.
17) Are the the Garden and City of Charlottesville responsible for selection of the winning proposal, or only the the Garden?
the Garden will select the winning proposal, but we will take the City’s input.
18) Will the contracting entity be the Garden or the City of Charlottesville via Parks and Recreation?
the Garden will the contracting entity.
19) What kind of support for outreach will the Garden provide during outreach – working in conjunction of the selected team? E.g.
a. Will they develop public announcements in local media?
With the selected firm’s support, the Garden will develop public announcements in local media.
b. Will they set up and coordinate locations for meetings?
c. Will the the Garden website be available for on-line surveys and will the Garden upload and manage electronic content? E.g. post and enable questionnaires?
All of these suggestions are possible based on firm’s recommended approach.
20) Is a fee for admission anticipated, or is the garden to be free to all?
At this point we anticipate free admission to all.
21) Will historically underutilized businesses be required?
the Garden does require historically underutilized businesses but it would be welcomed.
22) Understanding that the city will provide base level maintenance, is the additional maintenance necessary for a botanical garden expected to be performed by contractors, garden staff, or volunteers?
Primarily volunteers will be handling maintenance however based on needs, varying levels may be used at some point.
23) In the RFP, page 2. A. General.2.b. and 3. Speak to deliverables for all the Phases, such as timeline, schedule of values, and itemized costs. Which of these are due as part of Phase I – Schematics?
All of those are part of the schematic design phase. Please prepare proposal as if you are being engaged start to finish.
24) Does the Garden have a construction or project budget in mind?
See answer to 1 above.
25) Does the Garden intend to work with a single design team from SD through CD or will the SD designers need to offer a competing proposal to continue with the design work?
We would hope to use the same firm throughout but are only prepared to award the schematic phase at this time.
26) The RFP lists only renderings as deliverables for the SD and DD phases. This is unusual for us. It would be more typical for us to produce renderings in a pre-SD and SD phase, and to begin CAD documentation in the SD phase. Is the garden open to suggested changes to the proposed phasing of the design work?
If suggested changes would help in the costing throughout the project, please feel free to price this in and note it in your response.
27) In the RFP, page 5.d. -what is considered ‘fine art rendition’? Does this refer to computer aided graphics or is this hand drawings?
CAD, hand drawings, or a combination are all acceptable submission renderings.
PARK PLAN QUESTIONS
28) In the City of Charlottesville Website, there is a plan entitled ‘Overall Concept Plan’ dated 6-03- 14 produced by Mahan Rykiel. This was not included in the attachment portion of the RFP. How does this more detailed plan fit into current ‘Schematic Plan of McIntire Park East’ (attachment C)?
The Schematic Park Plan prepared by Mahan Rykiel and approved by the City Council on March 16, 2015 is the most current and recent schematic plan for the east side of McIntire Park. The site plan and construction drawings for elements on the east side of the park outside of the Botanical Garden area have been approved by the City’s Department of Neighborhood Development Services. These construction drawings are included in the RFP addendum.
29) Can you provide a diagram that specifically illustrates the 8.5-acres as part of this project?
East McIntire Park Schematic Park Plan
30) Under Specific Elements of the Plan. Elements are mentioned that are not within the initial 8 page RFP. Such as: great lawn, amphitheater, wedding venue, art in the park, working greenhouse, maintenance facilities, service area. How are these elements to be addressed within the Schematic phase?
These elements are inclusive to the Botanical Garden Core Area and are not addressed in the City’s construction drawings and approved site plan. The Schematic Phase may or may not include these elements depending on the community survey results.
31) Is visitor parking lot design and implementation excluded from the proposal scope?
Yes, these areas are the responsibility of the City of Charlottevsille and included in the construction drawings provided in the addendum.
PAVILION AND ANCILLARY STRUCTURE QUESTIONS
32) Has there been any discussion about a preferred aesthetic direction for the architecture and hardscape: Modernist, Regional etc.?
We are open to aesthetic direction based on community and stakeholder feedback.
33) It appears that locating a Visitor’s Center will be a part of the Schematic Design Phase. Is this correct?
34) Should the Visitor’s Center be designed as well (conceptually)? In the RFP, page 4c. Design Development Phase. No.5 states that the design of the Welcome Pavilion and ancillary structures is part of phase 2. But on page 2. Under A. General, second paragraph, states that the the Garden site plan ‘include an entry Welcome Pavilion’. Does this mean that the footprint and overall size of structures are required during the Schematic Phase? Please clarify extent of building requirements during schematic?
Our desire is that the schematic phase provides enough visibility into the feel of these structures that we can begin a meaningful capital campaign. The intent in the schematic phase is not to have an architectural design of final square footage but more to provide the layout of these structures.
35) Can you define what potential ‘ancillary’ structures mean?
Potential Ancillary structures would be Tool Sheds, etc. the Garden is relying on your expertise to tell us what we need to some extent.
36) How and by whom are the visitor education center and water feature to be designed by?
The selected Landscape Architecture firm will be responsible for the design of the visitor education center and water feature.
37) Is design of collections and furnishings in the visitor center to be included in the proposal?
These are not part of this proposal (See #2).
38) Is the restroom building to be designed as part of the ‘ancillary structures’ as part of this effort?
The City is providing these facilities.
39) The RFP (page2) states ‘pavilion and ancillary structures are to be developed in concert with the Visitors Education Center’. However, if I read correctly the design of the Visitors’ Education center is not to be undertaken at this point. Please elaborate on how you envision the two being designed ‘in concert’ with one another?
The Schematic Design phase will determine the visitor’s center and ancillary building requirements as well as their locations. We expect an architecture firm to be engaged at some point during the Design Development phase so these structures will gain more definition.
40) Is the location of the pavilion to be the location shown on sheet C4.3 of the plans prepared by Mahan Rykiel? If so who will provide final documentation for the landscape surrounding this area? Is this RFP only requiring the design of the pavilion (architecture only) for the footprint specified on that plan?
The pavilion and other structures reflected in the Mahan Rykiel construction drawings (provided in the addendum) are the responsibility of the City of Charlottesville and not part of the the Garden scope of work. The landscaping plan for the areas on sheet C4.3 is provided in the addendum as Sheet L3.03 and was part of the approved site plan for the east side of McIntire Park.
41) Will the Timmons Group need to be part of each teams response to address issues related to the stream relocation and adjacencies that may be developed as part of the plan? Or can the Timmons Group be hired directly by the Garden directly once a better understanding of the impacts and/or requirements are related to their previous stream remediation work?
The Conceptual Design Plan for stream remediation prepared by the Timmons group is provided in its totality as part of the addendum documentation. The inclusion or non-inclusion of the Timmons Group in any proposal response is at the discretion of each individual potential proposer. Decisions taken regarding the retention by the the Garden of any architectural and engineering firms is at the discretion of the the Garden Board.
42) There is mention of a stream remediation plan. Can you clarify as to whether a stream restoration/remediation is a part of this project? RFP references “Coordinate with the City Parks and Recreation Department regarding the stream remediation planning as needed, in order to accurately site the stream project in the Site Plan. The stream project could affect the siting of the pond and other features along the stream. The Site Plan shall include details of the stream remediation plan and its effect on the the Garden area“. Please elaborate on what services/scope this will entail.
The stream remediation/restoration project is not included in the scope of work for the the Garden and will be the responsibility of the City of Charlottesville. At this time, the City intends to use the conceptual plan developed by the Timmons Group to guide a final design and construction documents for the stream work. Given the topography of this riparian corridor and other site constraints the City does not anticipate a final design for the stream to be markedly different in scope from the conceptual plan. It should be noted however that the stream remediation/restoration work is not currently funded.
43) Is there a preference to have Timmons remain on the project as the civil engineer?
The City does not comment on such questions. The inclusion or non-inclusion of the Timmons Group in any proposal response is at the discretion of each individual proposer.
TRAFFIC STUDY QUESTIONS
44) The traffic study…Is that for mainly pedestrian movements?A formal traffic effort could be quite costly. Has the city undertaken any types of studies that may be utilized for this
Review existing traffic studies for insight into the pedestrian, bicycle, and automobile traffic patterns in and around the site. No new traffic studies are required at this time.
Q&A MEETING QUESTIONS
45) Northern Plan ideas – are those required or ideas that came out of a community process?
The elements in the Schematic Park Plan adopted by the City Council March 16 2015 followed an extensive year-long community park master planning process and the adoption of the park master plan in 2012 by the City Council. The elements included in both the Park Master Plan and the Schematic Park Plan were the result of the planning process and are not to be altered.
46) What is the source of water for the Pond, well?
The Board is open to some type of water feature other than a pond, but expect a well combined with roof water cisterns to be the water source.
47) Is irrigation plans be part of the design phase?
We do not anticipate detailed irrigation plans until Construction Document phase.
48) Will the botanical garden bring in construction managers?
Please offer your expertise in every way you can.
49) Strategies for maintenance?
We will need a deer barrier as well as low maintenance plants. Except in times of extreme drought, plants should be able to maintain themselves without irrigation after the initial two growing seasons.