Sheridan Construction was chosen to build the Oakfuskee Conservation Center at Pyne Road Park.

Sheridan was chosen from four other companies that submitted bids: Freeman & Associates, Headley, River City and Torrance. It was the fourth-lowest company with $541,477 for total construction manager fees. Freeman was the most expensive at $826,750 while Torrance was the least expensive at $513,750.

“When we do this, we consider everything [about the company], their experience, past project and fees,” said James Anderson, special project manager for Troup County. “It all has to combine who we think will be the best construction manager for this particular project and give us the best value.”

Sheridan charges a flat fee of $7,500 for pre-construction services while its construction manager fees are $43,125. These costs include deposits and insurance costs for the company. His monthly overhead to manage the project is $19,897. The whole project should last 14 months.

“We would pay them $318,352 to manage [the project] throughout the course,” he said.

The project has a construction budget of $6.3 million, of which $1.5 million came from a grant from the Callaway Foundation and $1.8 million from the Department of Natural Resources. The county will also provide $3 million from the county’s SPLOST funds.

The building will be an event facility for weddings, family reunions, corporate events, fishing tournaments, birthday parties and more.

According to the project description, the 17,000 square foot multipurpose conservation facility will consist of two levels with classroom and lab space for Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, outdoor pavilion, outdoor amphitheater, new service roads, sidewalks and nature trails. Additional plans include construction of a wildlife viewing deck, construction of a dock for the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, and construction of a new dock at Special Tree.

Phase 1 of the project includes the finishing of the upper part of the two-storey building. The basement, which will include a classroom, meeting room and offices, will be completed in a later phase as funding arrives, Anderson said.

“Some of the other things we have [planned] as additional alternatives when [funding] is available is an outdoor pavilion, outdoor fire pits and potentially an outdoor amphitheater that overlooks the lake,” Anderson added.