Bond measures ensure campus overhaul remains under budget

By Christian Urrutia, Web Editor

The finalization of the construction occurring from the Campus Center and Classroom Building Project was not only on time this fall semester, but is also estimated to be under budget by over of $1 million.  

The budget for Contra Costa College’s three new buildings and plaza area originated from the voter-approved Measure A 2002 and 2006 bond measures. Projected excess amounts are to be spent on remaining bond measure projects as long as it is in accordance with the bond language.

District Chief Facilities Planner Ray Pyle said, “The total (construction) project budget is $72,375,500, basically rounded to about $72.4.”

According to the information listed on the Contra Costa Community College District website,, bond funds may only be used for the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, or replacement of college facilities, or the acquisition or lease of real property for college facilities, and not for any other purpose such as teacher and administrator salaries, or other operating expenses.

Pyle said, “About $67.6 million was used from Measure A 2006, $4.8 million from Measure A 2002, and we’re trending (to be) under budget.”

CCC President Mojdeh Mehdizadeh said, “The District (Office) worked hard to obtain realistic costs estimates once the design was completed and approved through the Division of State Architects Office (DSA). 

“The college, district and our project management team, Critical Solutions Inc., have worked diligently to ensure the project remains on budget (in this case slightly under), and on time,” Mehdizadeh said.

Pyle said, “The (district facilities team) is confident that it will have bond money in excess of $1 million left over once the estimates are done.”

He said it takes the district three to five months to configure the final numbers after the contractual closeouts with independent contractors through Critical Solutions Inc. The district has 50 to 60 contracts for the project.

Business Services Director Mariles Magalong said that in regards to the excess funds, the project is not completed, so the remaining funds will be used for future projects identified by the college.

Mehdizadeh also said the funds can be used for other planned Measure A 2006 and Measure E 2014 projects.

Buildings and Grounds Manager Bruce King verified some of newer listed projects since he and Magalong serve as the liaison between the district and Critical Solutions Inc.

King said, “An archway is in discussion that the school wants to install by the foot bridge entranceway to Student Services Center Plaza, a vision instilled by former CCC president McKinley Williams. Critical Solutions, Inc. is looking to receive (construction) quotes and then it would have to be sent for approval to the (DSA).”

He said another idea is to have a weather protection shield cover similar to one found at bus stops, installed at the drop off zone in front of Lot 2, on Comet Way.

Pyle said, “We also have a financial close out (for the Campus Center Plaza) with DSA but the excess funds stay with the college as long as it is consistent with the bond language.”

King also said every additional item added to the surplus construction budget would have to be submitted to the bond oversight committee. The 11-member independent citizens’ oversight committee is to ensure that funds are used only for the projects listed by the college.