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co-op values A New Co-op?


Improved operations, greater safety and lower utility costs would ensure better environment for employees and members


co-op's proposed new office facility. The board is expected to vote on the question at their meeting in July.


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Jim Jackson, Kiamichi Electric Cooperative (KEC) general manager, said board members wanted to review final details and costs before making their decision.


The decisions follows more than year of meetings and conferences with engineers, builders and architects. The co-op hired Oklahoma City-based C.H. Guernsey Engineering and Architecture to assess the co-op's building needs based on future growth projections. "Originally, our idea was to renovate our existing facility to bring us into compliance with American Disability Act (ADA) requirements, add the additional space we need, and address ongoing problems due to leaks and mold," said Jackson.


After Guernsey's initial estimate and lengthy report detailing issues involved in renovation, the board asked the firm to develop plans for a new facility as a cost comparison.


"Renovation costs amounted to $190.44/ sq. ft. with no contingency costs included, which we believed we would run into. After adding these costs, the renovation estimate came to around $230/sq. ft," said Jackson.


Many months and several design stages later, Guernsey presented the co-op with a new building option at an estimated cost of $208/sq. ft. This cost was later amended following input from a general contractor.


"As we moved forward with the process, and incorporated a general contractor to assist in the estimating process, our latest estimate came in at $206/ sq. ft. That's


4 | may - june 2014 | Light Post


he Kiamichi Electric Cooperative board of trustees will meet in June to review final details of the


much less than the original estimate and significantly less than costs associated with renovation. It 's possible that as we move further into the process, we could see even more savings," Jackson said.


The Guernsey design calls for a 19,000 sq. ft. office facility with an attached 7,500 sq. ft. warehouse. Features include dedicated office space for each co-op department and an enlarged front lobby for greater comfort for members. An office/conference room adjacent to the lobby will provide private space for meeting with members.


Enhanced safety features include an internal sprinkler system, additional entrances and exists, mounted and monitored security cameras at the main entrances and exits, and bullet resistant doors and windows in the front lobby.


An internal safe room will house the dispatch area and all emergency communication equipment. It will also serve as storm shelter for employees and visitors. An enlarged conference/meeting room with audio/visual equipment will serve as main location for safety meetings and other professional development training. The room includes enough seating capacity for all co-op employees. Handicapped accessible parking will be available at two entrances and all bathrooms will be ADA compliant.


Designed for energy efficiency, the proposed facility will be heated and cooled by a geothermal heat pump with a centrally- controlled thermostat. Windows will feature tinted, low E, insulated glass; doors are hollow (R-7.5) and insulated. The co-op will save an estimated 25 percent on energy costs from the geothermal unit alone.


"Considering the ongoing problems with our old building and the high cost to renovate, we are pleased with the


possibility of a new safe, sound structure with the capacity and quality to carry us into the future," Jackson noted."Our old building lasted over 40 years and we've come a long way since then. Imagine what the next 50 years might bring.


If the board approves the new facility, construction could begin as early as this summer, with a finished building ready for business in 1½ years.


Please check the July-August issue of the Light Post for further updates on the building, or contact your co-op at 800-888-2731.■


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