A new contractor has been chosen to finish Dunkin’ Donuts Park, and work is expected to resume next week, an Arch Insurance official said Wednesday.
The new contractor will be Baltimore-based Whiting-Turner Contracting Co., which has extensive experience in building sports venues, said Patrick Nails, a senior vice president with Arch Insurance, the company guaranteeing completion of the ballpark.
Whiting-Turner officials have already been on-site to review the work that still needs to be done, Nails said in an email to The Courant on Wednesday afternoon. Both Whiting crews and subcontractors who have previously worked on the stadium should be on the job beginning next week, he said.
Nails said Whiting-Turner brings extensive experience with sports and recreational facilities “which it will use to complete construction of the ballpark so that we can bring baseball to Hartford next year.”
The company’s construction portfolio features more than a dozen sports and fitness projects. They include the home of the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s East Campus Athletic Village, which includes an outdoor football stadium and an indoor basketball arena; and a basketball practice facility at Baylor University in Texas.
In Connecticut, the company has worked on the Connecticut Science Center, Hartford’s Front Street and the Hartford Classical Magnet School, as well as on projects at Yale, Middlesex Hospital and Norwalk Community College.
“These were complex negotiations, and Arch Insurance appreciates the cooperation of the city of Hartford, the mayor’s office, and Eastern League to bring them to conclusion,” Nails said. “A lot of work remains to be done to complete the park, but we look forward to working with all parties to bring baseball to Hartford in April 2017.”
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said Wednesday that the city was pleased that Arch had selected a contractor with extensive construction experience, including the construction of sports facilities and stadiums.
“We look forward to working closely with Whiting-Turner Contracting Co., with the Yard Goats, and with the Eastern League in the months ahead,” Bronin said.
The team is scheduled to play its first game in Dunkin’ Donuts Park on April 13, 2017, after spending its inaugural Hartford season on the road because of construction delays and cost overruns at the $71 million minor league baseball stadium.
Those delays resulted in the city terminating the developers, Centerplan Construction Co. and DoNo Hartford in June.
It has been nearly four months since work ceased on the publicly financed project.
In the meantime, the former developers sued the city, claiming wrongful termination, and sought an injunction preventing another company from completing the work. The dispute is in court-ordered mediation.
The Eastern League has threatened to move the team out of Hartford if the 6,000-seat stadium is not ready for next season.
Earlier this month, Bronin announced that the city and Arch had agreed in principle to have Arch oversee completion of the project.
Nails did not say how much the work is expected to cost or how long the job will take to finish, but a report earlier this month from Jonathan O’Neil Cole, the ballpark’s architect, painted a picture of widespread workmanship problems.
Raymond Garcia, an attorney for the former developers, declined to comment Wednesday.
Attempts to reach Whiting-Turner officials after business hours Wednesday were unsuccessful.