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Last Updated 05/24/2023 01:42 PM
Project Title

National Register of Historic Places-listed 1874 Fire Tower

Physical Address View project details and contacts
City, State (County) Helena, MT 59601   (Lewis and Clark County)
Category(s) Entertainment/Recreation
Sub-Category(s) Museum
Contracting Method Competitive Bids
Project Status Bidding, Construction start expected June 2023
Bids Due View project details and contacts
Estimated Value $500,000 [brand] Estimate
Plans Available from Municipal Agency
Owner View project details and contacts
Architect View project details and contacts

This project involves repairs to the approximately 36' high 1874 National Register-listed timber-frame fire watch tower in Helena, Montana (the Fire Tower). The Fire Tower shall be repaired in accordance with The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties and a Repair Plan for the Fire Tower dated September 2022 (Plan). The Fire Tower was built using timber-framing techniques and joinery and is fully exposed to the elements. This project requires that the contractor undertaking the repair according to the Plan has demonstrated experience with specifying and verifying wood species and exposed timber framing/timber-frame joinery to provide a service life of several decades with minimal inspection and maintenance requirements SCOPE OF WORK 1. Contractor to remove the watch cabin and base; remove individual timbers for repair (mark for reassembly), including scarfing, mortise and tenon or dutchman repair with new or reclaimed Select Structural grade timbers of Douglas Fir according to the "plan" 2. As specified in the "Plan", to maximize retention of historic material, the existing timbers and material must be tested with a resistance drill to quantify the extent of deterioration (e.g., a drill manufactured by either RinnTech or IML); 3. Create free tenon connections based on historic examples and required engineering capacity; scarfed splices and Dutchman inserts as specified in the Plan. 4. Install individual piers with standoff moisture barriers under the northeast and southeast legs of the Fire Tower using Timberlinx HDA095 or Simpson Strong-Tie CPT882 steel rod connectors; 5. Remove all sealants previously applied to existing timbers. 6. Contractor to remove and reinstall steel fencing around base of the fire tower, remove and reinstall Christmas lights and provide site security (fencing etc.) PREQUALIFICATION REQUIREMENTS 1. Applicant shall have 10 years of experience in the repair of exposed historic heavy timber-frame structures, including repair of traditional timber-frame joinery. 2. Applicant must have at least 5 years of experience using a resistance drill of the types indicated above in prior heavy timber-frame repair projects to determine the extent of wood deterioration in existing historic timbers. Use of a portable hand drill is not adequate for conducting resistance drilling as it does not quantify the loss of cross section. 3. Applicant must provide documentation and photographs of at least 3 projects completed within the past 5 years that are parallel in scale (including height) and scope with the Fire Tower repair project. 4. Applicant must describe their approach for conducting the repairs, including how repair material will be sourced to meet the structural grade and moisture content requirements, how the Fire Tower will be stabilized while conducting the repairs, and how the repairs will be made (e.g., splicing existing timbers and repair material, repairing deteriorated tenons at connections). 5. Applicant must provide an example of the type of inspection and maintenance requirements that they anticipate will be required by the City after completion of the rehabilitation project. Each bidder shall expressly covenant in the bid that if the bidder is awarded the contract, the bidder will, within 7 days after the bid is awarded, enter into a formal contract and give an approved performance bond and a labor and materials payment bond to secure the performance of the terms and conditions of the contract. Each bid must be accompanied by bid security payable to the City of Helena for ten percent (I 0%) of the total amount of the bid. Bid security provided in a form specified in 18-1-203, MCA, which includes, but is not limited to, certified check, cashier's check, bank draft, bid bond, guaranty bond, or surety bond, constitutes compliance with this requirement. The bid security protects and indemnifies the City against the failure or refusal of the successful bidder to timely enter into the contract. The City reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received, waive informalities, postpone the award of the contract for a period not to exceed SIXTY (60) days, and accept the lowest responsive and responsible bid that is in the best interest of the City.


Division 01 - General Requirements, Construction Facilities, Field Offices and Sheds, Sanitary Facilities, Construction Aids, Temporary Scaffolding and Platforms.
Division 03 - Concrete, Concrete Forming, Concrete Accessories, Concrete Reinforcing, Cast-in-Place Concrete, Structural Concrete.
Division 04 - Masonry, Unit Masonry.
Division 05 - Metals, Structural Metal Framing, Structural Steel Framing, Structural Steel for Buildings, Steel Joist Framing.
Division 06 - Wood, Plastics, and Composites, Rough Carpentry, Finish Carpentry, Millwork.
Division 07 - Thermal and Moisture Protection, Dampproofing and Waterproofing, Sheet Metal Waterproofing, Thermal Insulation, Weather Barriers, Built-Up Bituminous Roofing, Flashing and Sheet Metal, Joint Sealants.
Division 08 - Openings, Metal Frames, Metal Doors, Wood Doors, Plastic Doors, Special Function Doors, Cold Storage Doors, Panel Doors, Sectional Doors, Entrances and Storefronts, Entrances, Automatic Entrances, Sliding Automatic Entrances, Windows, Door Hardware.
Division 09 - Finishes, Plaster and Gypsum Board, Gypsum Board, Tiling, Acoustical Ceilings, Flooring, Painting and Coating, Painting, Exterior Painting, Interior Painting.
Division 10 - Specialties, Signage, Telephone Specialties, Compartments and Cubicles, Fire Protection Specialties, Fire Protection Cabinets, Fire Extinguishers, Storage Assemblies, Metal Storage Shelving.
Division 11 - Equipment, Loading Dock Equipment.
Division 12 - Furnishings, Casework, Rugs and Mats, Office Furniture, Site Furnishings, Trash and Litter Receptacles.
Division 21 - Fire Suppression, Instrumentation and Control for Fire-Suppression Systems, Fire-Extinguishing Systems.
Division 22 - Plumbing, Plumbing Piping, Facility Water Distribution, Plumbing Equipment, Plumbing Fixtures, Commercial Plumbing Fixtures, Drinking Fountains and Water Coolers.
Division 23 - Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning (HVAC), HVAC Insulation, Instrumentation and Control for HVAC, HVAC Air Distribution.
Division 26 - Electrical, Instrumentation and Control for Electrical Systems, Power Distribution Units, Interior Lighting, Emergency Lighting, Exit Signs, Exterior Lighting, Lighting Poles and Standards, Parking Lighting, Area Lighting, Site Lighting, Flood Lighting.
Division 27 - Communications, Structured Cabling, Data Communications, Voice Communications, Distributed Audio-Video Communications Systems, Paging Systems.
Division 28 - Electronic Safety and Security, Electronic Access Control and Intrusion Detection, Access Control, Electronic Surveillance, Video Surveillance, Fire Detection and Alarm.
Division 31 - Earthwork, Site Clearing, Grading, Soil Treatment.
Division 32 - Exterior Improvements, Bases, Ballasts, and Paving, Flexible Paving, Asphalt Paving, Rigid Paving, Concrete Paving, Curbs, Gutters, Sidewalks, and Driveways, Paving Specialties, Parking Bumpers, Pavement Markings, Fences and Gates, Planting Irrigation, Planting.
Division 33 - Utilities, Water Utilities, Sanitary Sewerage Utilities, Storm Drainage Utilities.

Bidder's List View project details and contacts
Prospective Bidders View project details and contacts
Project Documents
 Engineered Spec Sheet
 Architectural Plans
 Other Documents