Silver Spring Transit Center on hold until 2014

SILVER SPRING, Md. – It’s going to cost more and take longer.

Contractors for the Silver Spring Transit Center say the summer of 2014 is the earliest the project could be ready to operate, and county officials seem to concede that’s the case.

In a blunt letter to Montgomery County Director of General Services David Dise, Bryant Foulger of the Foulger Pratt Company called the time estimates made about some repairs “completely disingenuous” and suggested the summer of 2014 may be an optimistic estimate for completion of the project.

At a briefing before the Montgomery County Council, Dise repeated the hope that repairs could be completed by the end of 2013. Referring to Foulger’s letter, Floreen said, “This isn’t gonna get done by the end of this year unless we know for certain it’s gonna stay above 40 degrees until Christmas.”

Dise striking an optimistic tone, responded “Well, I’ve got my fingers crossed.” But then added ” but it’s also snowed on Oct. 8″

Council member Valerie Ervin, whose district includes Silver Spring, where the project sits, was clearly unnerved by the tone of Foulger’s letter and accompanying statement.

“I think there are some pretty powerful statements here in this letter that are a big concern to me.”

But Dise downplayed the letter, calling it a position statement.

“It’s a reservation of right and a prelude to future negotiations for either claim or dispute.”

Foulger argues against the method of repair – using latex modified concrete – and states that will mean additional costs – costs he suggested his company should not have to bear. But Dise was adamant: Taxpayers will not be left holding the bag.

“When the responsibilities are divided between the design flaws and the installation or construction flaws, the county continues to maintain the position that those who are responsible for the errors should pay for them and will pay for them.”

Read the letters below:

Sept 10 Statement From Bryant Foulger

SSTC David Dice Ltr 9.10.2013

WTOP’s Kate Ryan contributed to this report.

Follow @KateRyanWTOP and @WTOP on Twitter.

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