March 3, 2024 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Santa Monica City Hall Doles Out Nearly $1M For Big Blue Bus:

Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus (BBB) system will receive new furniture, preventive maintenance, and cameras. These new items will cost City Hall more than a shiny penny.

Council members approved last Tuesday three separate consent calendar items that would approve expenditures to install new furniture at the BBB Operations Building, hire a company to perform inspection and maintenance services, and attend to on-board surveillance of individual buses.

The council approved an $80,000 contract with California-based Interior Office Systems (IOS) “to provide additional furniture, installation, modifications and payment of furniture storage fees for the Big Blue Bus Operations Building.”

The deal is part of a three-year contract that will now be worth $971,995. BBB’s Operations Building is located at 1660 Seventh Street and underwent an “overall rehabilitation” in 2011.

City staff said the furniture to be purchased is “cost-effective, easily ordered from local suppliers, and made of recycled and low-emission materials that are compliant with commonly accepted ‘cradle to cradle’ standards.”

Meanwhile, council members also approved nearly $287,000 to be spent on repairing and servicing the system’s on-board surveillance systems.

“Every three months all buses would be inspected, repaired and a report of findings submitted,” City staff said. “Each vehicle would have every camera inspected for clarity and functionality, the electronic module would be inspected for loose connections, and the configuration and firmware would be checked and updated as needed to ensure proper operation.”

Wincal Technology was awarded the one-year contract with two additional one-year renewal options. City Hall would pay Wincal Technology $286,524 during the three-year period.

Also approved was a three-year contract, worth as much as $955,080, awarded to Santa Monica-based Harder Brake Lathe and Electric for providing “preventive maintenance inspection service and repair of the 100,000 plus square feet of Big Blue Bus facilities”

City staff said such maintenance “is necessary to keep the buildings and grounds safe, operating to original equipment manufacturer recommendations and specifications, and to ensure compliance with federal, state and City codes and regulations.”

Onsite facilities include the Operations Building, the Fuel and Wash Facility, and the Transit Maintenance Facility as well as parking lots, underground facilities, and general grounds such as landscaping and utilities. Located offsite are: a fuel dispensary at Fifth and Olympic, a BBB store, and the transit mall. Each of these facilities will be maintained as part of the contract.

Beyond the facilities, also to be maintained are the heating and air conditioning units, plumbing, the methane detection system, fuel systems, electrical equipment, and in-ground hoists.

“A minimum of three journeyman-level facility technicians are needed to adequately perform the inspections and repairs on building HVAC, plumbing and electrical systems,” City staff said. “Although sections of BBB facilities have undergone refurbishment and repair, long-term planning of preventive maintenance has not been conducted consistently on site. In addition, the BBB facilities maintenance staffing level is not sufficient to perform maintenance services.”

Similar to the surveillance system contract, the preventive maintenance agreement is also for one-year with two one-year options. The first year of the contract is worth $300,000. In year two, the fee would increase to $318,000. The final year, if renewed, would be valued at $337,080.

All three consent calendar items were unanimously approved.

Council member Terry O’Day was not present at the Aug. 28 meeting.

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