City opens new bids for Sphar

City officials have another batch of bids to consider for the Sphar building project, after the second bidding window closed Wednesday.

The Winchester Board of Commissioners voted to rebid the project after the initial bid process resulted in one bid, which was incomplete.

By the bid deadline Wednesday, two bids were submitted. Churchill McGee of Lexington submitted the low bid with a base bid of $2,747,000 with an alternate bid of $148,297.

The other bid was submitted by Structural Systems Repair Group, based in Cincinnati, with a base bid of $3,498.540 and an alternate of $150,682.

Winchester City Manager Matt Belcher said the alternate portion included the elevator and some electrical work on the second floor. Belcher said there has not been enough time yet to analyze the bids to make a recommendation to the commission.

Between the city and county, nearly $2 million has been pledged to rebuild and renovate the former seed warehouse on North Main Street. The building has been vacant and deteriorating for several years, and was sold to the city in 2014.

Estimates submitted in February 2017 showed stabilizing the 137-year-old, 27,000 square foot building and opening several city offices would cost about $2 million.

Plans for the building call for it to house a welcome center and offices for the chamber of commerce, tourism commission, industrial development authority and Main Street Winchester programs. There would be space for other use as well.