Developer chosen for new Frankfort state office building

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – The build-to-suit selection committee for the proposed new Frankfort state office building and parking structure met on Oct. 25 to interview short-listed firms prior to deciding on the finalist earlier this week.

CRM/DW Wilburn #2 LLC of Lexington has been selected to design, build, finance, and operate the 385,500-square-foot, 1,500 employee office building and 1206 space parking structure. However, before a final contract is awarded in early December, negotiations are proceeding to ensure all aspects of the request for proposal (RFP) will be met. Once the contract is finalized, approximately 16 acres of land in downtown Frankfort will be deeded over to the developer.

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The CRM/DW Wilburn team understands how these projects work and I feel confident they will deliver a finished project that everyone can be proud of, said William M. Landrum III, secretary of the Finance and Administration Cabinet. I truly believe this project will be the catalyst to transform downtown Frankfort for many years to come.

According to the RFP, in addition to the new construction, the developer will be responsible for demolition of the Capital Plaza Tower, Frankfort Convention Center,two plaza area parking garages, elevated plaza and plaza infrastructure, Fountain Place Shops, Wilkinson Boulevard Offices, the elevated overpasses on Clinton and Mero Streets, and the cooling towers on Wilkinson Boulevard. Additionally, the developer will be responsible for improvements to the Wilkinson Boulevard pedestrian bridge, Capital Plaza Hotel faade, and YMCA parking garage Clinton Street faade.

Were excited to be selected for this important project for both the state and local community, said Craig Turner, founder/CEO of CRM Companies. After much preparation work, the team is ready to get started as soon as all the details of the contract are worked out.

Once substantial construction of the building and garage are complete in March of 2020, the 8-acre parcel where the Fountain Place Shops and convention center are located will revert to the Commonwealth. This developer-ready area will be a centerpiece of the local communitys vision for a redevelopment project and will be conveyed to the developer the community selects for the project. It is the Finance Cabinets goal to have the property return to the local tax roll, which will benefit the community and local schools.

For many years the Cabinets Department of Facilities and Support Services has advocated for a new building to replace the functionally obsolete Capital Plaza complex that is nearly 48 years old. Costly maintenance issues and cost overruns, along with potential safety issues, were thoroughly analyzed before the cabinet concluded the most effective solution is to demolish current structures and replace them with new energy efficient and modern ones.

This is the sixth build-to-suit project the state has done since 2008. The most recent one in Frankfort was the 300 Building on Sower Boulevard, also developed by CRM/DW Wilburn. Final determination of agencies that will move to the new building has not been made.

Additional information is available online athttp://finance.ky.gov/.

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Tom Kenny joined ABC 36 News in June of 2001 as a General Assignment Reporter. A native of Peoria, Illinois, he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Western Illinois University. He currently anchors ABC 36 News at 5pm, 6pm and 11pm. Tom has more than three decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He is the only broadcast journalist in Lexington television history to be honored with a national Edward R. Murrow Award. Tom was recognized for reporting on a story that gave a rare glimpse inside the secretive world of the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has won an Emmy Award for anchoring and another for investigative reporting, exposing the deceit and potential danger of online diploma mills. Tom has ten other Emmy nominations to his credit for investigative and feature reporting. He has won Associated Press Awards for reporting and anchoring. He has won two Addy Awards for excellence in promotional writing. Tom was the first broadcast journalist in Lexington TV history to be awarded the Silver Circle Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. It is one of the highest honors given by NATAS. It recognizes television professionals who have performed distinguished service within the television industry for 25-years or more. Tom was honored for more than his longevity, he was recognized for making an enduring contribution to the vitality of the television industry and for setting high standards of achievement. He was also recognized for giving back to the community as a mentor, educator and volunteer. Tom also has network broadcast experience in radio and television having worked as a sports reporter for ESPN, Sportschannel, NBC Sports and the Breeders’ Cup. He was also the studio host and halftime producer for CBS Radio Sports’ College Football Game of the Week and covered the NFL for One-On-One Radio Sports. Prior to joining WTVQ-TV, Tom was Vice-President of the Houston Astros Minor League baseball team in Lexington. He was part of the original management team that brought professional baseball back to the Bluegrass after a nearly 50-year absence. Tom has lived in Lexington since 1984. In that time, he has been heavily involved with dozens of charity and civic groups, with a special emphasis on helping Veterans. He can be reached at tkenny@wtvq.com. You can also follow Tom on Facebook www.facebook.com/TomKennyABC and Twitter @TomKennyNews. Just click on the links at the top of the page.