Manhattan Construction Co. and the Drillers’ Stadium Trust have awarded 25 contracts, have signed two but none are firm, said the stadium project manager Bob Jack.
“We are still out still out there trying to design a project,” Jack said. “We are designing and building at the same time. There are no firm contracts with anyone.”
This early in the project, Manhattan is awarding contractions on initial guaranteed price — where the original quoted price is subject to change as the scope of the project changes.
Right now, Tulsa-based contractors on site include W. M. Couch Inc. and Paragon Contractors, working on excavation and site utilities. Bennett Steel, Canterra Concrete and Palmer Mechanical.
Faith Technologies is an out-of-state electrical contractor with a Tulsa branch office, Jack said.
“They will hire all local electricians,” he said. Faith operates 15 location in five other states, including Kansas, Missouri, Georgia, Indiana and the headquarters in Wisconsin.
Manhattan and the trust are sensitive to the location of the stadium and hare ensuring that minorities perform between 10 to 20 percent of the work, Jack said.
“That is a big deal since it is in the Greenwood District,” he said. “We are mandating that contractors solicit and engage minorities.”
Manhattan “blanketed the community, soliciting people to work on the project, Jack said.
“If the minority contractor is a small one, we are placing them with a larger contractor, acting as a mentor, teaching and helping them through the project.”
Currently, 20 percent of the excavation is handled by minority contractors.
It has been estimated that prior to 1921, north Tulsa and the Greenwood business district, in what is now the northeast corner of the Inner Dispersal Loop, boasted more than 200 restaurants and 400 African-American family-owned businesses.
Mayor Kathy Taylor has led the effort to hire minority contractors. The issue took a leap forward following the election of Barack Obama as president.
Manhattan, sensitive to the historic value of the property, is making every effort to attract participation of minority contractors, Jack said.
On June 16, the Tulsa Drillers, a Texas League, Double-A affiliate of the Colorado Rockies baseball club, announced they would relocate to a stadium in downtown Tulsa’s Greenwood district.
The Tulsa Stadium Trust, created to oversee construction, received one bid to construct the stadium, at specifications outlined by the trust, for $39.2 million. That bid came from Tulsa Stadium Construction Co. LLC, and was submitted by Phil Lakin, the construction company’s manager.
Lakin is executive director of the Tulsa Community Foundation, a $2 billion, tax-exempt, public charity created by George Kaiser and other philanthropists in 1998.
Groundbreaking was held Dec. 19 and the scheduled 2010 opening date remains in place. On Jan. 12, Oneok Inc. and the Oneok Foundation announced they would pay $5 million for the 20-year naming rights for the baseball park, which will be named Oneok Field.