Re Costs spiral on big projects (Our Region, The Public Eye, Jan. 5): Sacramento Countys construction project to renovate and expand a juvenile hall began in 2002 and consisted of four phased projects totaling $88.6 million. The low bids awarded for each project were under the estimated cost, which saved the county $6.5 million. Deciding to renovate nine existing juvenile hall housing units, instead of building nine new units, was a $12.6 million cost savings. And the construction contingency, reserved for unforeseen conditions, was $8.9 million. Responsible decisions by those involved with the project saved the county and, ultimately, the taxpayers $28 million in all.
-- Gary Steele, Shingle Springs