Multnomah County Library Bond-Funded Capital Project Delivery Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Updated February 22, 2021

Why did the Board of County Commissioners refer a library capital projects bond to voters? 

What projects will be delivered under the Library’s capital projects bond? 

  • The $387m bond will consist of:
    • Building a “flagship” library of approx. 95,000 sq. ft. in East County, similar in size to Central Library downtown.
    • Expanding, rebuilding or renovating seven branch libraries, including Albina, Belmont, Holgate, Midland, North Portland, Northwest and St. Johns.
    • Adding 10-gigabit speed internet and equipment to take advantage of its capabilities to all libraries.
    • Creating a central materials handling and distribution center to increase efficiency and cost effectiveness.
    • Adding refresh improvements such as furniture and paint to other library locations not listed above.
  • For more information, including the anticipated sequencing of projects, see Library Building Bond.

What is important to the Library when doing this work? 

  • The Library’s Mission, Priorities and Pillars include the pillars ensuring free access for all, being a trusted guide for learning, being the leading advocate for reading, and championing equity and inclusion. Our priorities include: helping people find work and develop career skills; supporting education and learning for all ages; enhancing and diversifying virtual services; technology training, access, and assistance for all; and creating and maintaining safe and healthy spaces.
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion is a key value of the County and the Library. All aspects of this work will center equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Sustainability has long been important to both the County and the Library, and will be a key element of design, construction, and operations of facilities delivered under this program.
  • Collaboration: Inclusive design that engages community members, and collaborative project delivery between the Library, County, design team, and construction team.

The library has established the following capital planning project principles:

  1. Accountability:  Library buildings will be built to create maximum value for taxpayers by making sure projects are on time and on budget. We work with oversight entities to ensure transparent processes and expose problems with projects.
  2. Equity: Library buildings will reflect equity through, community input, design and project decisions. The project will center race and culture in design, implementation, and procurement processes.
  3. Accessibility for all: Library buildings will incorporate universal design principles and other strategies to make them usable by everyone. 
  4. Flexibility today and for the future: Library buildings will be models of flexible space, adaptable to changing needs and uses throughout the day and over the course of many years as community needs, technology and library service models evolve.
  5. Community partnership: Library buildings will reflect the cultures and priorities of our communities and focus on fulfilling patron needs. We prioritize community and patron-focused input. 
  6. Innovative and inspirational design: Library buildings will have innovative and inspirational design. We will work with our stakeholders to achieve unique designs for our buildings and spaces.
  7. Sustainability: Library buildings will be sustainably built. We will use sustainable techniques, tools, materials and practices throughout and after construction.
  8. Public safety: Library buildings will be built to support community resilience in response to emergencies.

How will the bond projects be delivered? 

  • The Library intends to use collaborative project delivery best practices for the projects delivered under the bond.
    • We anticipate engaging Owner’s Representative Services for the larger projects.
    • We anticipate using Construction Manager/General Contractor (CM/GC) project delivery, with Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) and Target Value design.
    • Broad stakeholder engagement will be a critical component of design.
    • Centering race will be a critical component of project delivery, including during procurement, community and staff engagement, design, and construction.
    • There will be a project agreement with labor, equity stakeholders, the contractor and the county on these projects. 
  • Design Process
    • Inclusive design will be key to ensuring that the library spaces we create via the bond reflect the needs of the community
      • Centering race will be essential
      • Community engagement will be critical
      • Library staff engagement will be a priority
    • Design Values 
    • Target Value Design
      • It will be important to ensure that each of the projects is able to be delivered within the budget allocated to it by the bond. To that end we will be engaging the construction contractors to provide pre-construction services. One of those services will be to engage with our design teams to provide Target Value Design, a process by which “real time” cost estimating occurs to ensure we are continuously fine tuning the design to ensure it meets the budget.
  • Fast Tracking Projects
    • It may be necessary to fast-track some of our projects to ensure they are delivered in a timely manner. 
    • Fast-tracking projects involves the issuance of multiple permit and construction packages. For example, a foundation and structural package may be issued for the building before all of the interior elements of the building have been designed. This allows for construction to start sooner, and for the overall project schedule to be compressed, thereby saving money.
  • Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP)
    • We intend to engage with the CM/GC contractor to agree to a Guaranteed Maximum Price to help ensure that the project has cost certainty and stays on budget.

What will the procurement and contracting process be for the project contractors and consultants? 

  • The County will be using the MultCo Marketplace as a tool for soliciting procurement responses for this effort. Interested parties should use the portal to register under the appropriate commodity code for their related services to ensure notifications occur. 
    • Owner’s Rep
    • Architects
    • General Contractors
    • Other (geotech, special inspections & testing, etc.)
    • Go to the Bids and Proposals on the Multnomah County website, where you will receive instructions for registering and can view all County solicitations.
  • The procurement and contracting process is being finalized and is subject to change.
    • At this point we are anticipating that we will bundle projects into “chapters”, and may simultaneously procure multiple Owner’s Reps, A/Es, CMGCs, and potentially other Owner’s consultants to deliver the many projects under the bond.
      • We anticipate a multiple stage selection process, with Qualifications, Approach, and Interview stages.
      • We anticipate a value-based selections, with the exception of the A/Es, which we anticipate to be qualification-based..
      • We plan to do a separate procurement for the flagship library versus the branch library projects.
    • Supporting the Library’s and County’s Mission & Values
      • We anticipate having Project Labor Agreements most of the work under the bond.
      • The County’s Workforce Training and Hiring Program will apply to these projects.
      • MWESB targets will be included in these projects.
      • Percent for art and RACC programs will be applicable to these projects.
      • Construction Diversity and Equity Fund (1% for pre apprenticeship development, workforce retention and technical assistance for Certified firms) will be applicable to these projects. 
      • In line with past large County projects, we expect strong utilization of State COBID certified firms. Additionally, we envision aggressive goals for inclusion of women and minorities in the construction workforce. Progress toward goals will be tracked publicly.

When will the procurement process start?

  • The procurement process has started. Release dates for all solicitations are not yet determined, but will not necessarily be sequential in nature; some procurements may occur concurrently with others, in the form of “chapters” of work.