Two months after the heavy April rains that caused severe flooding in parts of the area, damage caused to the basement of Brookfield Village Hall, 8820 Brookfield Ave., will soon be repaired.
On June 10, the village board passed a resolution to spend $31,750 to repair an exterior wall and lay new flooring in the basement, which also serves as a meeting space for community groups and recreation programs and is the home of the SEASPAR Eagles program for adults with disabilities.
The work will be done by Lisle-based DT Group LLC, which submitted the lowest of three proposals to the village, according to Village Manager Riccardo Ginex. The work is expected to commence sometime this week, he added.
“We want to get it up and running as soon as possible,” said Ginex.
Initially the village attempted to get the work covered by its risk management insurance cooperative, IRMA, but the co-op refused, stating that the water had infiltrated the basement as seepage, not because of overland flooding.
A sheet of water covered most of the basement area, according to Mary Pezdek, a recreation department employee whose office is in the basement of village hall. In addition to damaging most of the west wall of the basement, it damaged floor tiles, carpeting, village records that had been stacked in boxes on the floor of a storage room, recreation department papers. Village Manager Riccardo Ginex said water also damaged the floor in the weight room used by the police department.
“Within 20 minutes [on April 18], seepage was coming to the middle of the floor,” Ginex said.
It’s the second time the recreation area in the basement has flooded in recent years, said Pezdek. In 2008, during another significant rainstorm the basement received a couple of inches of water, she said.
To immediately address the problem, Brookfield hired a sealing contractor to patch, according to Ginex, around 20 cracks inside and outside the concrete foundation wall on the west side of the building. That effort cost about $7,650 to complete.
Asked if the sealing job will prevent the same type of seepage from happening again, Ginex said he was hopeful.
“I’m keeping my fingers crossed, but I’m confident they did good work to fix these things,” Ginex said.
Most of the drywall on the west wall was removed and a new interior wall will need to be rebuilt. However, the biggest expense for the repair will be for new flooring, both in the SEASPAR activity area and in the main recreation hall.
The unbudgeted expense will be paid for out of the “manager’s contingency” line item in the budget. Each year, the village board sets aside an amount for emergency expenditures. In 2013, the budget called for $145,000 to be set aside as the manager’s contingency.
Ginex said he wanted to get the work done soon because the recreation department’s summer programs are starting now. A couple of spring recreation programs had to be canceled because of the damage done in April; many others were relocated to the Hollywood Community House.
The SEASPAR Eagles program has been relocated to Darien until the Brookfield space is usable again.