Richmond Hill library build stalled indefinitely
The building contract was cancelled at 90 per cent completion; no end date in sight
Residents of Oak Ridges who were eager for the opening of their longawaited Oak Ridges Library were disappointed when the Town of Richmond Hill announced that its contract with Bondfield Construction for the completion of the library was terminated. The building was at 90 per cent completion.
According to Ash O’Malley, a representative from the town, Richmond Hill awarded the contract to Bondfield Construction Company in July 2016. At the time, the project was supposed to be substantially completed by November 2017. Due to rain delays and contractual issues, the substantially completed date was changed to March of 2018. The contract was terminated Oct. 3.
“Despite the best efforts of town staff to work with [Bondfield] to complete the last 10 per cent of construction, they have made little progress,” said O’Malley. Recently, Bondfield made headlines when it was discovered that other contracts were undergoing similar delays, with three other terminated contracts.
“Some people are already two years delayed,” said local councillor Greg Beros. “Big projects, downtown hospitals, all kinds of stuff. These guys were doing Union Station in downtown Toronto. They’re not a little company.” However, Beros is confident that the town has done everything it could to mitigate further delays.
“There’s a ton of effort that goes through to screen out any kinds of problems you would normally have,” he said. “I’ve got no issue with what we did in trying to get the best company to do the work at the best price.”
He also added that, due to the negative press surrounding Bondfield due to its other high-profile project delays, that many of his residents have been understanding.
“If we were the only project, people might start wondering, ‘ What’s going on with them and the town, and why does everyone else get along with them and we can’t?’ ” said Beros. “But that’s not the case.”
O’Malley said that the town has been working with Zurich Insurance to determine the next steps of the project and that a new completion date has not been announced.
“The community is anxious for the new library to open, and we apologize for the delay,” said O’Malley.
I’ve got no issue with what we did in trying to get the best company.”
The new Oak Ridges Library under construction