Work up top delayed

Published 12:06 am Saturday, May 19, 2012

LAUREN WOOD/THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Nathan Donovan, left, helps Todd Mesler Jr., right, cut off an old piece of metal that was lining the roof Friday afternoon on the roof of the Natchez Association for the Preservation of Afro-American Culture Museum. Donovan and Mesler were working with Mesler’s uncle, Mike Mesler, to reroof the museum.

NATCHEZ — A double-booked crane has pushed roof repair work on the Natchez Senior Citizen Center back a month, but the contracting company says it will meet its mid-July deadline for the city roof repair project.

Vern Loyd, general superintendent for E. Cornell Malone Corporation, said the company’s crane is being used on another job right now, so he said the company has taken a month off until the crane is available.

In the meantime, the company contracted out work on the Natchez Association for the Preservation of Afro-American Culture museum roof to CMR Construction of St. Louis.

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Amelia Salmon, the project’s architect, said CMR crews have torn out the skylight on the NAPAC museum roof and started repairing a portion of the green tile roof on the NAPAC Friday.

E. Cornell Malone crews have finished replacing the roofs at the Natchez Police Department facility and Natchez Fire Station No. 2 on John R. Junkin Drive.

The Natchez Senior Citizen Center is next on the list for roof replacement, and the missing metal cornice at the center will also be replaced.

All work is scheduled to wrap up in mid-July.

The Natchez Board of Aldermen awarded a $425,850 construction contract for the project to the Jackson-based E. Cornell Malone Corporation in November.

The roofing project is being funded through a $562,884 grant, which requires no matching funds, awarded to the City of Natchez in 2010. The Mississippi Development Authority administers the grant, which is funded through the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant program.

The grant covers 100 percent of the roof project, including the grant administration, architect and construction fees.

In addition to new roofs, the buildings could also be getting some extra work.

The grant has an approximately $86,000 in extra funds, Salmon said. The funds can be used for unforeseen repairs that might be found once the current roofs are torn off the buildings.

Salmon said the funds could also be used to repair interior damage to the buildings that was caused by the leaky roofs.

Any extra damages, Salmon said, will been assessed further into the project.

“We’re waiting to see how things go and if there is much leeway in the budget,” Salmon said. “Before we spend money to go in and identify a whole bunch of extra work, we need to make sure we have the leeway in the budget.”