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St. Helena Public Library

The St. Helena Public Library is at 1492 Library Lane.

The St. Helena City Council wants to look at a cheaper alternative after bids to replace the library’s leaky roof came in over budget.

Leaks have caused significant mold and damaged computers, office equipment, books, and the building itself. Public Works has patched the roof repeatedly, but new leaks crop up every winter, and the city concluded that the entire roof has exceeded its useful life.

In May, the City Council approved a $480,000 budget to replace the roof. However, cost estimates rose when staff discovered that the existing roof contains asbestos that will need to be disposed of safely.

The city received only two bids to replace the flat and pitched portions of the roof: $598,000 from Stronger Building Services of San Leandro and $782,150 from Best Contracting Services, Inc. of Gardena.

Instead of awarding one of those bids, the council agreed to issue an informal bid to replace only the flat portion of the roof, which seems to be the source of the leaks.

The partial replacement is estimated to cost less than $200,000, substantially cheaper than replacing the entire roof.

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