Contract for Desiderio Park Public Bathroom Would Start Construction, But Won't Stop Opposition

Published : Sunday, July 21, 2019 | 5:33 PM

The final look for Desiderio Neighborhood Park public restroom. Courtesy City of Pasadena

Pasadena’s City Council could decide Monday to award the construction contract for a controversial public restroom at the newly completed Desiderio Neighborhood Park.

Public debate has boiled for years over whether to build a public restroom at the park beneath the Colorado Street Bridge and if so, precisely where.

Schematic shows location of public restroom in Desiderio Neighborhood Park, relative to the Colorado Street Bridge. Courtesy City of Pasadena

The final plans by the City call for the $594,000 restroom building to be built at the northernmost portion of the park.

3.8-acres Desiderio Park features a meadow-type landscape with walkways, picnic tables, and children’s play equipment. It opened to the public on June 27 after a grand opening ceremony.

Some residents and neighbors have voiced concerns about the Park and the bathroom being sited almost directly under the bridge where more than 150 suicide jumps have occurred over the years.

Opponents also said the public restroom could become a magnet for transients and crime.

A West Pasadena Residents Association spokesperson said in June that the group continues to oppose the planned construction of the restroom, but could do nothing more since the City had decided to pursue the project.

“We also think it’s aesthetically atrocious, where it would be placed, in the size it would be, especially directly underneath the bridge,” Avram Gold, Vice President of the neighborhood association, said. “So all we can do is say we hope it’s not as bad as we think it’s going to be.”

On Monday, the City Council will discuss a final recommendation from the Department of Public Works to award the construction contract to Tarzana-based Cybertech Construction Company, Inc., which quoted a contract price of $550,000. The price includes the base contract amount of $446,777 and a contingency of $103,223.

Cybertech Construction was one of four vendors that submitted bids for the project, which the City advertised starting in April. The company has not performed any previous work for the City, according to the Public Works Department.

Public Works is also recommending an amendment a separate contract with ONYX Architects for architecture and engineering services related to the restroom project, which would increase the contract amount by $30,000 for a total of $156,210.

Cybertech Construction Company’s scope of work, according to the proposed contract, will include the construction of a 700-square-foot public park restroom providing three bathroom stalls, one urinal, two sinks, and a storage room.

The project also includes site improvements including concrete walks. The design and location of the restroom facility were affirmed by City Council in July last year.

Funding for the project will be addressed by existing budgeted appropriations in the Installation of Restroom Building at Desiderio ParkConstruction Phase CIP project.

Construction is estimated to begin in September, and the work should be completed by February 2020.

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