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Cook, Flatt & Strobel Engineers Inc. has been tabbed by the city of Springfield to provide a master plan and market analysis for a 200-acre proposed development site.
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Cook, Flatt & Strobel Engineers Inc. has been tabbed by the city of Springfield to provide a master plan and market analysis for a 200-acre proposed development site.

City set to fund master plan for 200 acres

Posted online

The lone respondent to a request for qualifications seeking a master plan and market analysis for 200 acres the city owns in southwest Springfield expects the project work to begin by July.

Todd Polk, associate senior project manager with Topeka, Kansas-based Cook, Flatt & Strobel Engineers Inc., said his firm signed a contract with the city to produce the master plan and market analysis for the acreage located northwest of the James River Freeway and West Bypass interchange. The city issued the RFQ to a total of 14 firms in December 2018, with a Jan. 11 deadline.

City officials anticipated three to five responses for the RFQ, but CFS was the only firm to respond. Assistant Environmental Services Director Ron Petering previously said the low response was unusual, but not unknown, according to past Springfield Business Journal reporting.

This week, Petering said the city is currently working through its portion of the contract and expects it to be finalized in the next few weeks. Negotiations have been ongoing with CFS for about two months to determine the scope of work and price for the master plan and market analysis process, he added.

“There’s been a bit of a back and forth, which isn’t unusual in this kind of a project,” he said.

Petering declined to disclose the price as he said it’s still being negotiated. However, he did confirm it would be below $100,000. Expenditures will come out of the city’s Environmental Services enterprise fund.

“It’s been a long process to refine the scope,” Polk said, adding the city’s expenditure will come in July, the start of its next fiscal year. The city’s desire to fund the project for fiscal 2020 also is a contributor to the delay, he added.

CFS has operated in Springfield since 2013 and has an office in Chesterfield Village. It will serve as lead for the city project with BRP Architects and real estate appraisal company National Valuation Consultants Inc. assisting, Polk said.

In the city’s RFQ letter sent to firms, officials said the master plan would identify the developable areas of the 200 acres, divide them into tracts, determine the potential marketability and recommend roadway access.

“We just want to explore the big picture of what the ground would look like,” Petering said. “We’re just trying to make sure we give ourselves the best use of the ground.”

A developer is not being sought for the land, Petering said. Instead, he described the project as the first step of a planning effort for the property that will be used as a guide for future development.

City officials have discussed the possibility of using a portion of the land to store Environmental Services’ equipment, along with office space, as the department has space challenges, Petering said. In addition to being located at the city treatment plants, the department is currently spread out across town in four buildings. A new animal shelter for the Springfield-Greene County Health Department is another possible use for the site, he added.

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