General contractor sought for Orlando's 104-acre 'Packing District' public park

General contractor sought for Orlando's 104-acre 'Packing District' public park
This grading and drainage plan for the Packing District Park improvements shows the property at the southeast corner of John Young Parkway and Princeton Street, with general areas outlined for a passive event lawn, wetland park and trails, multi-use fields, future tennis center and future development outparcel. (GAI Consultants)

The City of Orlando is seeking a general contractor to lead work on the new 104-acre Packing District Park, a project estimated by staff to cost $13 million, according to a Request for Proposals (RFP) issued on Monday.

The Packing District Park will be located on the southeast corner of N. John Young Parkway and W. Princeton Street, and serve as anchor to the long-term redevelopment of 202 acres in west College Park by Dr. Phillips Charities.


Development will include a core "Central Park" area with scenic boardwalk, pier and potential interactive fountain, an event lawn adjacent to a future pavilion area, multi-use fields, and a pedestrian and bicycle trail system.

A shared parking lot will serve the park and future Orlando Tennis Centre, a stormwater pond is needed to accommodate the park and future redevelopment in the Packing District, and conveyence of stormwater within the park could include including rain gardens and other stormwater improvements, per the RFP.

Transportation network improvements will need to include internal park access, extensions to New Hampshire Street and Texas Avenue, access to parking lots, development pads and the existing Texas Avenue right-of-way, and pedestrian and bicycle access to attached parcels.

The Packing District Park project was approved in December 2017 by City Council, in which Dr. Phillips Charities agreed to grant the property to the city in exchange for developing the park.

In February, Dr. Phillips Charities bought 118 acres and then immediately gifted 104 acres to the city for the park. For context, downtown's Lake Eola Park covers 23 acres.

As of early June, construction documents have been completed through a design development level (60 percent), per the RFP. The city intends for a preconstruction, design completion and jurisdictional approval phase to continue through the third quarter of this year.

Groundbreaking on the park is anticipated to start in the fourth quarter, with a substantial completion date by August 2020 and the park fully built by January 2021.

Separately, bid procurement for a design-build contractor for the new Orlando Tennis Centre is expected to run from June 15 through late August.

Contractor applications are due by July 12 to the city's Procurement and Contracts Division. An optional pre-proposal conference will be held June 20 at 10 a.m. in City Hall.

After ranking proposals from the RFP, the city will negotiate an initial contract with the top ranked firm. After drawings and specifications are substantially completed, the contractor will develop a Guaranteed Maximum Price.

Concurrently, the city's Public Works department filed plans earlier this month with the St. Johns River Water Management District to develop approximately 149 acres with a master stormwater pond that will include the Packing District Park and Packing District redevelopment area.

SC Advisors was hired to serve as development manager for the project on behalf of Dr. Phillips Charities and the city, which will oversee and assist in managing the contractor's scope of services. GAI Consultants has been the civil engineer and Perkins + Will the architect.

Full documents for RFP no. 18-0427 can be found through the city's Procurement and Contracts Division webpage.

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