Daytona Beach, FL – Commissioners move forward with a plan to sell dirt in the hopes of covering a little over $2 million in construction costs for the new 100-bed homeless shelter to be built on the west side of Daytona Beach.
By unanimous vote at tonight’s meeting (October 3rd), all seven Daytona Beach City Commission members approved an amended agreement with P&S Paving allowing the company to take that dirt from the 626-acre parcel where First Step Shelter will be built between International Speedway Boulevard/U.S. 92 and Interstate 4.
That dirt – which P&S plans to sell or use as fill for future construction projects – would come from at least one massive stormwater retention pond P&S plans to create at the site on its own dime, with the company having the option to dig out more retention ponds in the future at that same site if it’s approved by the city.
In exchange for that estimated 1.4 million cubic yards of dirt, P&S has agreed to lower the city’s cost of building the estimated $6 million, 15,000 square-foot shelter off ISB near Red John Road by $1,064,800, applicable only after all necessary permits are in place for the removal of the dirt.
The company also has the option to pay the city another $1,064,800 should the pond reach a “target volume” of around 40 acres and then pay another $2 per cubic yard for any more dirt taken out after that.
Concerns that the city was charging too little for P&S to remove the dirt were dismissed by Daytona Beach City Manager Jim Chisholm during the meeting, saying that he felt it was a fair price given that P&S was assuming the risk of removing the dirt without knowing for sure how suitable it would be to use as fill.
“In discussing with some of the reputable people that operate borrow pits and the sale of materials out of those, we found that the range of value was between a dollar and two and a half dollars [per cubic yard of dirt],” Chisholm added.
Chisholm also noted that those who were estimating much higher amounts per cubic yard of dirt were likely quoting what that dirt would sell for in a retail environment, not in the form that P&S would be getting it.
Similar comments were echoed by Zone 4’s Robert Gilliland.
“I called around also and came up with very similar numbers to what staff did,” Gilliland noted. “It’s just really expensive to basically mine this dirt.”
The pond locations and how they are configured would be subject to city approval.
P&S would also need to have approval from state and federal agencies to take that dirt by next October, including the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, or either side could pull out of the deal.